Demystifying Spousal Support In New York Divorces

Understandably, going through a divorce is challenging and emotionally taxing. That element is never lost on us, even as a family that assists clients with their family law cases. Whereas we can guide you through each component of the divorce process, we wanted to go over a specific piece: spousal support. Although money doesn’t buy happiness, not having it creates further stress during an uncertain time in your life. 

In New York, spousal support is determined by looking at several factors outlined in the Domestic Relations Law Section 236(B)(6). We don’t expect you to look up this law or be able to recite it, but we did want to confirm that there are laws in place to regulate the process you are going through. 


The Factors that Get Considered

Regarding spousal support, the court will assess numerous factors with the intention of arriving at a fair and equitable resolution. For example, the court evaluates the income and property that the two of you have acquired during your marriage. By extension, this includes distributive awards and property settlements. Everything gets accounted for. The length of your marriage also plays a role in determining spousal support. Generally speaking, longer marriages lead to higher spousal awards.

Before we discuss additional financial considerations, we should point out that a court will look at the age and health of each spouse. These two components could impact a person’s ability to earn more money in the future or become self-supporting. 


Financial Considerations

The court will look at each person’s earning capacity, including their education, skill sets, and the potential jobs they can pursue. This speaks to each person’s ability to support themselves post-divorce financially. Many people understand that they will have to divide their assets during the divorce process, but they may overlook that their liabilities must be accounted for. The court will also look at these financial obligations—for example, child support and any debt payments (e.g., cars, mortgages, etc.). 

This next part causes concern for some people, but it really shouldn’t. How much did each person contribute during the marriage? People worry that if their contributions were tied to homemaking and child care, they didn’t contribute financially to the marriage. However, the court recognizes that people sacrifice their careers and deliberately turn down opportunities because their children need them. If you are in this position, take comfort knowing that the court will not overlook your commitment to your children. Remember, everything is considered, and raising children so your spouse can earn money for the family is a meaningful contribution. 


Speak with Family Law Attorneys at Drucker & Mattia, PLLC

The attorneys of Drucker & Mattia, PLLC, possess comprehensive knowledge of New York family law and will guide you through all the components of the divorce process, including spousal support determinations. Every case is unique, and we are committed to understanding your goals before forming a strategy that aligns with them. Contact our office today to schedule your free consultation with one of our trusted attorneys.

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Drucker & Mattia PLLC

When you’re facing legal issues or pursuing a lawsuit, skilled legal counsel makes a big difference. At Drucker & Mattia, PLLC, we specialize in a wide range of legal areas to meet the needs of a diverse client base.

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