If you are considering a divorce or legal separation, you should discuss your right to spousal maintenance or alimony under Arizona law. There are many factors the court will consider but one of them is not your gender. An experienced family law attorney can help you better understand alimony and whether you are entitled to spousal maintenance.
Before spousal maintenance or alimony can be awarded in Arizona, the party seeking alimony must first demonstrate that he/she qualifies for spousal maintenance. To qualify, a spouse must meet one of the four following criteria:
1. The spouse lacks sufficient property, including property apportioned to the spouse, to provide for that spouse’s reasonable needs.
2. The spouse is unable to be self-sufficient through appropriate employment or is the custodian of a child whose age or condition is such that the custodian should not be required to seek employment outside the home or lacks earning ability in the labor market adequate to be self-sufficient.
3. The spouse contributed to the educational opportunities of the other spouse.
4. The spouse had a marriage of long duration and is of an age that may preclude the possibility of gaining employment adequate to be self-sufficient.
When a party qualifies for spousal maintenance, Arizona courts generally award rehabilitative or temporary spousal maintenance designed to give the receiving party some support until he/she can become self-sufficient. When determining spousal maintenance, the court will consider many factors, including the standard of living enjoyed before the divorce, the age and health of the parties, their educational levels and employment histories, the paying party’s ability to contribute support to the other party, and the children’s future educational needs. To discuss your issue with a family law attorney, contact Blehm Law.