Mediating Spousal Support on Long Island
Reaching a cooperative agreement on alimony
One of the most important issues for your financial future is whether your divorce will require spousal support to be paid. Whether you are the recipient or the payor of alimony, how much and for how long are two questions you can’t afford to ignore. Litigating the question of alimony before a judge, who doesn’t know you or the details of your circumstances, increases the chance that one spouse is going to be unhappy with the decision. An adverse ruling can also cause bitterness that affects your relationship going forward and makes it difficult to cooperate in other areas, like parenting. That’s why at Solutions Divorce Mediation, Inc., we recommend mediating your spousal support issue. With guidance from a neutral party who knows New York law, you can arrive at a mutually acceptable agreement quickly and cost-effectively.
Types of alimony available in New York
When it comes to spousal support, there are many options. One option that’s prevalent today among two-career couples is to forego alimony altogether. Where one spouse is completely dependent or earns significantly less than the other, couples can choose:
- Pendente lite — If you file for divorce without a spousal support agreement, the court may order temporary alimony based on statutory guidelines. The order stays in effect until the divorce is finalized.
- Restitutional — This type of alimony reimburses one spouse for expenses during the marriage that benefited the other spouse, such as tuition payments for a college or professional degree. Restitutional alimony can be paid in a lump sum or over time.
- Rehabilitative — It may take a dependent spouse a period of time to develop or refine marketable job skills. During this time, the high-earner spouse makes payments to maintain the dependent spouse at the appropriate standard of living.
- Permanent — These days, lifetime alimony is usually reserved for dependent spouses in marriages of long duration for whom a return to work outside the home is impractical.
Of course, to reach a fair result, you and your spouse must commit to the mediation process. With spousal support, that means a voluntary full disclosure of your finances. If one of the spouses holds out financial information, the mediation process will fall apart. The couple will have to litigate in court, where a spouse who suspects assets or income is being concealed can compel disclosure through court-ordered discovery.
Our mediators have extensive family law experience. We understand technical aspects of alimony, such as the tax advantages, and we can guide you toward a support arrangement that makes sense for your present and future finances.
Learn more about mediating spousal support with a free initial consultation
Spousal support could be the most crucial financial issue of your divorce. At Solutions Divorce Mediation, Inc., our skilled mediators can guide you and your spouse through the financial complexities to a manageable solution. To learn more, call 1.631.683.8172 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. Evening and weekend appointments are available, 7 days/week.