Dodd & Dodd Attorneys, PLLC

Dodd & Dodd Attorneys, PLLC Louisville Kentucky

(502) 584-1108

Spousal Maintenance – Temporary or Permanent in Louisville?

Spousal Maintenance - Temporary or Permanent in Louisville?

Is your spousal maintenance temporary or permanent and what is the difference between the two?  Does “permanent” mean “until death or remarriage?” Kentucky has very specific statutes which govern divorce and the the question of whether or not the Court will order spousal maintenance, often referred to as alimony.  If it is to be awarded, the next question is often “Is spousal maintenance temporary or permanent and how much is to be awarded?”

In order to answer these questions our Family Court here in Louisville will ask the next two questions:

  1. Is a former spouse unable to support themselves based upon their employment history and income, or are there child custody or special needs issues which prevent the ability to work?
  2. Does the former spouse who will be responsible to pay maintenance have sufficient assets, property or income to provide for their reasonable needs?

Unlike child support, Kentucky law does not establish any specific formula for the calculation of the amount of spousal maintenance to be awarded.  The Court has broad discretion, and usually considers several factors including but not limited to:

  • The duration of the marriage
  • The age, health and occupational viability of each spouse
  • The standard of living the parties enjoyed during the course of the marriage
  • The ability of the payor to make maintenance payments and still meet their own financial needs
  • The ability of the recipient to seek additional education or training which would allow them to seek gainful employment

There is no automatic guarantee for temporary or permanent spousal maintenance under any circumstances, and the Judge has broad discretion to consider many factors as well as the financial condition of each spouse before establishing orders for spousal maintenance.

If spousal maintenance is to be awarded during the process of the divorce, the Judge will issue “temporary” orders, which lasts for the duration of the divorce proceeding.  Once the divorce is approaching conclusion, the judge may issue short or long term “permanent” orders based upon the unique circumstances associated with the parties, their employment opportunities and their finances.  Generally speaking, Kentucky does not intend spousal maintenance to be indefinite but each case is  unique.  In cases of a longer term marriage and older parties, the permanent maintenance order may extend for an extensive period of time such as “until death or remarriage.”  If the parties are younger or if the marriage lasted less than 10 years the “permanent” maintenance order may only be for a period of years to allow the recipient to become self sustaining.

Are you concerned about spousal maintenance – temporary or permanent – in Louisville?  We invite you to contact Dodd & Dodd attorneys or call 502-584-1108 to schedule an appointment to discuss your case with an experienced and proven Louisville divorce and family law attorney.