Can a spouse get alimony or spousal support in Louisiana?
Divorce or separation is a tough transition in anyone’s life. With married couples, normally one or sometimes both members support each other financially to carry on responsibilities and both members support each other in drastic situations.
However, in circumstances of separation or divorce, couples have to go through a phase in which financial constraints are expected, especially when a member is economically dependent on their spouse. In situations like these, one member can file for spousal support. Spousal support is also referred to as alimony.
Spousal assistance is a court-directed order of financial aid during the process of divorce, either during the separation or for a period after the divorce. Spousal assistance is available for spouses who need money-related help to meet their fundamental necessities while changing from two livelihoods to one during the divorce. At the point when assistance is applied for, there are various circumstances that are pondered by the court before passing any judgement about spousal support. Like other parts of the world, Louisiana has laws on spousal support. Here are some details:
Different types of Spousal Support
1) Interim Support
Interim support is a type of support where one spouse demands help from the other until the divorce is finalized (mainly during the separation period or during court proceedings). The objective of interim spousal support is to avoid any economic issues until court proceedings are completed. Judges can also order interim spousal support if they find out that one spouse needs it. Interim spousal support is not permanent: it is for a limited period of time. Under Louisiana law, the day the divorce judgement is issued by the judge, interim support comes to an end. Under special circumstances, interim spousal support can exceed up to six more months after divorce, on the orders of the court.
2) Periodic Support
Periodic support is provided by the court to that member who was either totally dependent on another spouse or has very low income to get themselves sustained properly. Periodic spousal support is awarded to the one who had to struggle financially from divorce. Periodic support is normally provided until the dependent spouse becomes economically independent. The time duration for support is finalized by the court. In the meantime, if the dependent spouse gets remarried, periodic spousal support will be terminated.
3) Permanent Support
Permanent spousal support in Louisiana is rare. Under Louisiana law, it is awarded after the divorce. Also, if the spouse is disabled or has some kind of disease, permanent spousal support is provided.
Criteria of Spousal Support
Before the court can proceed to allow or disallow spousal support for any party, the spouse who is requesting spousal support should provide the evidence of financial need and how much support is to be required. After hearing the demand for support, the judge will evaluate several factors to analyze whether support is to be provided or not. Here are some of those factors:
1) Earning capability of both spouses.
2) Financial responsibilities of both spouses.
3) After custody of children, will that spouse bear their expenses?
4) The monthly income of both spouses.
5) Mental wellness of both spouses is to be examined.
6) Tax records of both spouses will be examined.
7) Do any of them have any criminal record?
8) Age of both spouses to determine how long they can work.
9) In case of any fault-based divorce scenario, the support demanding member of cannot avail any kind of spousal support.
10) For spousal support, the support requesting person should not be at fault.
How to determine how much support will be enough?
Louisiana law doesn't expressly give rules about awarding a specific amount of spousal assistance. Spousal support can be 25 or 50 percent of a spouse’s salary, but it keeps on changing depending upon the financial ability of the spouse. Most of the time, the amount of support is dependent on the lifestyle comparison of the spouse, before and after the separation.
Apart from that, courts must look for numerous factors (some of them are mentioned above) to decide the exact amount of financial support. The court will look at the amount of your spouse's pay and your needs after completing their own responsibilities. Additionally, courts can order a party who is seeking spousal support to reduce unnecessary expenses in order to form a lower aggregate due to economical constraints of the sponsoring spouse.
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This information has been provided for informational purposes only and is not intended and should not be construed to constitute legal advice. Please consult your attorney in connection with any specific situation under Louisiana law and the applicable state or local laws that may affect your legal rights.
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