Alimony

Alimony may not work the way you think it does. The Alimony Reform Act took effect in 2012, dramatically changing the way that spousal support is handled.

At Watson & Watson, P.C., our lawyers keep abreast of changes in the law. We understand how spousal support works under the new Massachusetts alimony reform law, and we are committed to using our knowledge to educate you, protect you and make certain payments are fair, if they are necessary. This is about making certain that you get started on the right foot following your divorce.

How Alimony Is Calculated In Massachusetts

While the guidelines are clearer under the new law, there is still a great deal of ambiguity involved in calculating alimony. First of all, alimony is not a requirement and will not be an issue in every divorce. There are now four different types of alimony: general term alimony, rehabilitative alimony, reimbursement alimony and transitional alimony.

The duration limits for each type of alimony vary. However, most people will be dealing primarily with general term alimony. The time limits for this type of alimony are:

  • Marriages five years or less: Alimony may be paid up to 50 percent of the duration of the marriage.
  • Marriages between five and 10 years: Alimony may be paid up to 60 percent of the duration of the marriage.
  • Marriages between 10 and 15 years: Alimony may be paid up to 70 percent of the duration of the marriage.
  • Marriages between 15 and 20 years: Alimony may be paid up to 80 percent of the duration of the marriage.
  • Marriages over 20 years: Alimony may be paid until retirement age or, in some circumstances, even longer.

When calculating the amount of alimony, many factors are considered. The Alimony Reform Act states that the alimony amount should not be more than the recipient’s need, or between 30 and 35 percent of the difference between each spouse’s incomes. We will review income amounts and other factors to ensure that, if there will be alimony payments, they are fair to you.

Spousal Support And Child Support

Under the new law, spousal support and child support interact much differently for people in Topsfield, Newburyport and Essex County. If your case involves both, it is critical that you choose an attorney well-versed in the changes to the law, as they impact not only how both spousal support and child support are calculated, but the durations of each. We know the law and can help with all divorce-related support issues.

Free Initial Consultation About Alimony

Call our attorneys today 978-462-3177 or email to speak with us about spousal support.