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Alimony vs. Spousal Support: What Are the Differences?

Jan 11, 2023 | Divorce

No one exchanges vows with the thought that they might later separate and divorce. You married your spouse because you wanted to spend the rest of your life with them. With so many marriages now ending in divorce though, you may find that it’s the best option. The judge who oversees the proceedings will work with you and your spouse as well as your lawyers to come up with a support agreement that benefits you both.

Are Support Orders Different?

No, support orders are not different. Both spousal or spouse support and alimony refer to the same thing. The judge’s order simply states that one partner has a greater chance of supporting the other. You may need to pay your former spouse, but the judge can also order that they pay you.

What Determines the Support Order?

A divorce lawyer like Pyfrom & Reisler, PA will talk with you about your chances of getting a support order in favor of or against you. The judge will usually look at who makes the most money as well as which person has a higher earnings potential. If you lost your job while your partner works full time, the judge will often order them to pay you. On the other hand, you might need to pay your former spouse if they stopped working to take care of your kids while you maintained a full-time job.

Can Support Orders Change?

Yes, support orders can change, which is why you need a divorce lawyer in Delray Beach by your side. When anything changes after your divorce, you can petition the court to change the order. A good example is when you lose your job or take a job that pays less. You need to show the court that you can no longer afford to pay the original amount you paid. A good lawyer can also petition the court if anything changes with your former spouse. You may need to go back to court because your partner now works in a different job and earns more than they did before.

What About Child Support?

Child support is different because it refers to money that pays for the support of a child. You should always work with a child support lawyer before you go to court. A divorce lawyer helps you petition the court for full or partial custody and get financial support. You usually pay less if you have partial custody of your child. If you do not pay the support order, the judge can issue a warrant for your arrest. You also risk paying some high fines and facing jail time unless you have a good child support lawyer by your side.

Finding a divorce lawyer in Delray Beach can help you navigate through the complex world of support orders, which include financial support for both spouses and children. Alimony is a type of spousal support that helps the former partner who makes less money get financial help. Contact Pyfrom & Reisler, PA before your divorce to get help in court.