Wail Sarieh

Alimony and Divorce


While the act of marriage is sometimes solemnized on the belief that the unions will last a lifetime, something can awry and unfortunately, instances of marriages falling by the wayside are increasing quite significantly. Hence. it is quite natural that the partners would like to get a decent move on in their lives and divorce is a universally accepted practice which has both legal and social sanctions. However, divorce comes with its own share of problems and challenges. There are issues regarding custody of the children, the dividing of assets, property, and the estates of both the partners and then there is the important issue about alimony. It is a highly complicated and misunderstood subject and therefore if you are going through a divorce or separation, you have to be aware of certain aspects about it. Of late, there is talk about sweeping reforms as far as laws related to divorce and alimony is concerned. However, according to many experts, there are some serious issues pertaining to alimony and divorce as far as these so called “sweeping reforms” is concerned. Therefore, it is important to have a clear and concise understanding and perspective of alimony. In simple words, alimony is a court instructed payment from one former spouse to the other partner. This is payable only after divorce proceedings have been completed.

What Is the Objective and Purpose of Alimony?

The main objective of alimony after divorce is to ensure that there is enough financial support available for the spouse after the divorce. The logic is that when the marriage was on and working fine, the spouse received regular financial support and that should be the case once the couple has divorced. However, it is important to bear in mind that the rules pertaining to divorce vary from state to state and California has its own rules pertaining to divorce and alimony. Hence, when it comes to completing the entire process of divorce, there is a need to factor the decision of the courts with regard to alimony.

How is Alimony Paid to the Spouse?

It would be important to mention that alimony is paid in three different ways:

  1. Regular payments which are continuous and permanent in nature, without any fixed end date.
  2. One lump sum payment.
  3. Temporary or rehabilitative arrangement which is purely interim and temporary in nature.

Hence, the other spouse can choose the type of alimony which is best suited to them, of course,with the consent and agreement of the court.

What is the Rationale Behind Alimony?

It would be pertinent to mention that the issues pertaining to alimony are often misunderstood amongst many. It is also perceived that by taking care of the family, either spouse did play a significant part in running the home. The main objective of alimony, apart from security and stability for the receiving spouse is to compensate them for the time and effort they have invested towards the well-being of the “family” as it existed before the divorce.

Wail Sarieh
By Wail Sarieh