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When a marriage is ending, parties need to make personal and legal decisions which will cause long-term impact for all who are involved. One of the important decisions that is negotiated or brought to court, is whether one spouse will be required to monetarily support the other, during the divorce litigation and after the final decree.
In Pennsylvania, there are various types of spousal maintenance available. Spousal support will be awarded to a dependent spouse if there is a separation, whether or not a divorce is pending. There are potential defenses to a claim for spousal support. Alimony pendente lite (APL) is temporary alimony that is available while the divorce litigation is pending. APL is a creature of statute and is without regard to the dependent-spouse’s misconduct. There is a formula used to compute the amount of the spousal support or APL obligation. Finally, alimony is the financial support that commences once the divorce is finalized. The court uses several factors to analyze whether alimony is appropriate and how much to award. All awards of spousal maintenance trigger special tax considerations. Counsel fees related to tax advice are deductible.
Decisions made during a divorce will affect the quality of life for each party. After the divorce, one may still face alimony issues. We provide ongoing representation concerning alimony awards. If there has been a substantial change in circumstances, alimony awards may be modified or terminated. Factors such as remarriage, variation in income, change in health and job status can affect spousal support, APL and modifiable alimony. It is important that you obtain legal advice so that your rights are protected. Each client’s situation is unique, and our attorneys craft individualized solutions to meet each client's needs.