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Alimony | Spousal Support

Alimony and Support Attorneys in New York City Fight Passionately for You

Get help with spousal maintenance in The Big Apple

In New York, when a couple divorces, one spouse may be awarded alimony or spousal maintenance. There are many types of alimony and numerous factors the court considers when awarding maintenance. We at Bernfeld, DeMatteo & Bernfeld, LLP recognize that understanding the law is the least of your worries. Our goal in representing you is to provide unrivaled legal advice, support and guidance so you can resume your life as quickly as possible.

What is alimony?

Alimony, also known as maintenance and spousal support in NYC, is money paid by one spouse to the other after a divorce. Alimony is intended to help supported spouses enjoy the standard of life they had during the marriage. Additionally, maintenance is often used to help a spouse obtain the education, training or skills needed to become self-sufficient. The factors the court considers when awarding spousal maintenance include:

  • Income and property of the respective parties
  • Duration of the marriage
  • Age and health of both parties
  • Present and future earning capacity of both parties
  • Ability of the party seeking maintenance to become self-supporting and, if applicable, the period of time and training necessary to do so
  • Reduced or lost lifetime earning capacity of the party seeking maintenance as a result of forgoing or delaying education, training, employment or career opportunities during the marriage
  • Presence of children of the marriage in the respective homes of the parties
  • Tax consequences to each party
  • Contributions and services of the party seeking maintenance as a spouse, parent, wage-earner and homemaker, and to the career or career potential of the other party
  • Wasteful dissipation of marital property by either spouse
  • Any transfer or encumbrance made in contemplation of a matrimonial action without fair consideration
  • Loss of health insurance benefits upon dissolution of the marriage
  • Any other factor that the court finds to be just and proper

After reviewing these and other relevant factors, the court is able to assess the alimony-seeking spouse’s need to be supported and the ability of the other spouse to pay.

Alimony payment modification

Post-divorce, has your financial situation changed for the worse? Are you worried about making your NYC alimony payments? If you wish to make a post-divorce modification of a spousal maintenance order, you should first consult with an attorney experienced in matrimonial and family law. Modifying an existing alimony order can be difficult, because it requires you to show the court that you no longer have the financial ability to make payments or that your ex-spouse no longer needs support.

Alimony changes you should know about

On October 12, 2010, new laws were passed in New York that affected temporary spousal maintenance and lawyers' fees for divorce cases. During a divorce, when one spouse’s income is less than two-thirds the amount of the other spouse’s income, the court will consider interim or temporary support. Additionally, to help both spouses afford legal counsel, the NY Domestic Relations Law explains that attorneys' fees may be awarded during a divorce, modification or enforcement proceeding if one spouse earns significantly less than the other.

Seek help from a competent legal team

At Bernfeld, DeMatteo & Bernfeld, LLP, we keep abreast of divorce and family law developments in New York. Our team of experienced and sophisticated lawyers will work diligently to protect your best interests. You can schedule a free initial consultation with an attorney at our firm by calling us at 646-880-4689 or contacting us online. We have flexible hours and our office is conveniently located near Grand Central Station and the United Nations headquarters.