Alimony Calculator Arizona
Many people facing a divorce in Arizona become worried about the many changes occurring in their lives. Decisions such as what will happen to the children, how will all the property be divided, and how the divorce will impact each spouse’s ability to financially support themselves.
One of the important considerations we have in our clients’ cases pertains to the issue of Alimony. Alimony, sometimes referred to as spousal maintenance, is an amount the court has the authority to order one spouse to pay the other spouse to enable that other spouse to meet their reasonable financial needs. Use of the word “reasonable” is a bit tricky because what is reasonable in one case may not be reasonable in another case. What is reasonable depends heavily on the facts of each particular case.
Many people search for alimony calculators in Arizona, sometimes referred to as spousal maintenance calculators in Arizona, to determine how much alimony they may be entitled to receive. The problem in relying upon these alleged alimony calculators is that there are simply too many factors a court must consider and too many other variables for them to even being close to correct. Let’s discuss some of those factors.
Alimony Calculator Arizona | Alimony Awards
If you are the main financial provider in your household, you may be responsible for paying alimony to your spouse. Consequently, if you, for example, were a stay at home parent you may be entitled to Alimony in an Arizona divorce or legal separation case.
So, who gets alimony after an Arizona divorce? Is awarded alimony, how much will it be and how long will it be ordered to be paid?
It is difficult to provide an answer that is both general and accurate to such an important question. There are many different reasons a court may award alimony or refuse to award it. For example, if a spouse has no worked for many years and is not able to secure a job to support themselves, he or she may be entitled to alimony. However, if that same spouse is being awarded millions of dollars a part of the division of community assets and can earn enough from the investment return on those assets in addition to what they may be able to earn then he or she may not be awarded alimony.
A spouse who otherwise may have been award alimony may have that claim denied. For example, if a spouse is married to a professional athlete who earned significant sums of money managed the parties’ finances and simply spent every dollar his or her spouse earned as an athlete, the court may consider how much that spouse would have received in accumulated assets, such as investments, if he or she hadn’t spent every dollar the high earning spouse earned. At a minimum, it may lower the amount and/or duration of an alimony award.
There are other reasons a court may award spousal maintenance, such as in lengthy marriages and the spouse who has not worked during the marriage is of an elder age the court will not expect them to work to support themselves. Conversely, a court may award spousal maintenance to a parent who is caring for such a young child he or she should not work.
Not only will the court consider the income differences between the parties and the assets each spouse will receive in the divorce, but the court will also consider the amount of debts the parties will each be responsible for when the divorce is complete. The court is required to equitably divide all debts, so that may be an important factor for the court to consider.
Some people choose to structure agreements regarding spousal maintenance with corresponding agreements regarding the division of community assets and debts. For example, a spouse who may have to pay spousal maintenance may, instead, agree to pay all of the parties’ debts and award the other spouse more of the community assets. This type of arrangement is not necessary, but it provides a creative way to resolve alimony issues in an Arizona divorce case.
You can find various divorce alimony calculators online. They will ask for general information and will spit out numbers, but they typically direct you to an experienced attorney for information on the amount and duration of spousal maintenance. The difficulty with alimony calculators online is that they cannot possibly give you an accurate answer, or many times even a close estimate, of whether you are entitled to alimony or the amount and duration of alimony payments. Our suggestion is to simply ignore them completely.