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Schwartz Law Firm, LLC. – Philadelphia Divorce Lawyers
Contrary to what many people think, Pennsylvania is an alimony state. The purpose of alimony (also known as spousal maintenance or spousal support) is two-fold. It provides the family court a way to somewhat equalize the incomes of the two parties after a divorce. It is also designed to provide the spouse who makes less income (the dependent spouse) with a fresh start.
We often advise people concerning how much alimony they may be entitled to receive or required to pay.
In Pennsylvania, each county is different in how alimony is handled and whether it is awarded. The general rule of thumb in Pennsylvania once was one year of alimony for every three years of marriage. Therefore, in a marriage of 15 years, with one spouse having greater income than the other, alimony might last approximately 5 years. However, if there are substantial marital assets a court might not award any alimony. In certain limited circumstances, one might qualify for lifetime alimony. In marriages of especially short duration there typically would be no alimony awarded. “Fault” issues such as abandonment and adultery can affect both the entitlement to support as well as the amount received. Alimony awards vary greatly from county to county.
After analyzing the income and the assets of each party, a good family attorney can tell you whether there will be alimony and, if so, a ball park figure of what the award of alimony might be.
For more information or to discuss your alimony case, contact the Schwartz Law Firm, LLC. today!
Lee A. Schwartz, Esquire, on January 26, 2005, received notice of a court award in a matter he litigated in what could possibly be the largest spousal support award in the history of Chester County.
On January 21, 2005, the Court of Common Pleas of Chester County ordered the Husband in the case to pay $111,773 per month in support, for a total of $1,276,448 to Wife for the period covering January 19, 2004 through December 31, 2004.
The plaintiff in the case was awarded a settlement that was the result of a determination by the Court of the Husband’s ability to pay based on his combined income and severance package from his employer.
The record setting court order is a matter of public record and is filed in the Chester County Court of Common Pleas.
The size of the settlement was impacted by the amount of money Husband made in salary and other forms of compensation and severance payments during 2004 when his combined earnings totaled $5,717,308.00.
For assistance with alimony/spousal support, contact our law office today for a consultation.