Minneapolis Spousal Maintenance Attorneys
Establishment of spousal maintenance (often referred to as alimony or spousal support) can be an important part of the final outcome of any divorce. Many times, a party is very concerned about how he or she will support himself or herself during and after the divorce, or conversely is very concerned about having to support the other spouse during and after the divorce. If spousal maintenance could be an issue in your divorce, working with a well-qualified attorney is the best way to make sure that your interests are protected. At Mack & Santana Law Offices, P.C., in Minneapolis, we can help.
In some cases, there may already be an award of spousal maintenance established and a change happens after the divorce causing a party to be concerned that the award should be changed (higher or lower) or terminated. The determination then becomes whether modification of the award is justified as there was a substantial change of circumstances making the original spousal maintenance award unreasonable and unfair.
Our team of experienced attorneys conducts a thorough review of the facts and circumstances that apply to the alimony/spousal maintenance question and is dedicated to helping you present your claim for spousal maintenance/alimony or handling your defense to a spousal maintenance/alimony claim. At times, key information (i.e., financial, medical, employability/earning capacity) is missing and our attorneys will pursue getting that information, or a party has not worked up to his or her capability, and our attorneys will work with you to address that situation. We use years of experience and an in-depth knowledge of the law to do this.
Minnesota Law on Spousal Maintenance (Alimony)
Sometimes the best way to achieve a fair spousal maintenance/alimony result is to come to an agreement between spouses. Our attorneys are experienced negotiators who will work with you to achieve top-quality results this way. In a negotiation setting or in litigation, when assessing the claim for spousal maintenance/alimony that you are considering bringing or defending against, it is critical to have an attorney who can work with you to properly gather evidence and analyze the following factors, which may also involve the legal processes and tools for obtaining records and pertinent evaluations:
•· Basic analysis. Need of the Party Requesting Maintenance versus Payor’s ability to pay while still meeting his/her own needs. The party requesting maintenance must establish there is a need before the court can justify a maintenance award.
•· Standard of living. The standard of living during the marriage as it impacts the parties’ “reasonable needs.”
•· Does the party asking for support have the ability to meet his or her needs independently through employment if not presently employed or underemployed? The Court is required to consider a party’s ability to meet his or her own needs independently as a “resource” available to him or her.
•· Education/Retraining to become self-sufficient. Either party may present evidence that the party requesting maintenance can enhance his or her income earning ability in order to become fully or partially self-supporting by returning to school for education and training.
•· Review income from all sources. The Court considers sources of income beyond employment income and earnings, including the income-producing assets to be distributed to the party requesting maintenance such as stocks, bonds and interest income from any nonmarital or marital property.
•· Duration of marriage and the lost employment opportunities of the “homemaker.” The duration of the marriage is a key component of the maintenance analysis.
•· Physical/emotional/health condition and age. The Court reviews any physical or emotional conditions raised by the party requesting maintenance.
•· Payor’s income, needs and ability to meet his/her needs. The Court must consider the payor’s financial circumstances and his or her needs as well before ordering him or her to pay spousal maintenance/alimony.
We strategically and passionately advocate for our clients in Minnesota courtrooms, focusing on presenting the evidence needed to present our clients’ perspectives to the court. We are efficient, committed, and creative family law attorneys who place great emphasis on meeting our clients’ needs today and far into the future.