When married couples decide to end their union, one of the parties involved will instigate court proceedings to bring about the termination of the marriage. An important part of most divorce cases is the fair division of assets and the custody of any child or children from the union; another frequent bone of contention is that of ailment. It is of course recognized that child custody and/or child support is of principal importance. It is also known that spousal maintenance and alimony can be a very explosive subject therefore it is advised that you seek immediate aid and counsel from an experienced Divorce Lawyer in Phoenix, Arizona. At Riebesehl Family Law Offices we are highly experienced in cases of divorce and are therefore well equipped to appraise your case accurately and inform you of your rights, as well as steering you through the often-complicated procedure of divorce.
In the state of Arizona, spousal maintenance may be given to a husband or wife if that party proves that it is necessary in order for them to meet their monetary obligations. It should be understood that ailment may be awarded in cases of dissolution and when parties become legally separated, not only in cases of divorce. Statute ARS §25-319 oversees spousal maintenance and alimony in Arizona. Before any such award is decreed however, it must be ascertained that ailment is in fact a necessity. If this is the case then it is the court’s task to decide the amount and duration of the maintenance.
Consideration will be given to several factors before any decision is made. These may include the level of comfort both parties enjoyed for the duration of the marriage or how long the partnership lasted for. Other factors may include:
- Maturity, career records and capability to make a living as well as the material and mental state of the party who is requesting ailment.
- The capability of the party required to pay ailment to satisfy the needs of the other party and their own needs.
- Monetary income of both parties including proportional capabilities to earn a living by working.
- The percentage of the ailment seeking party to the capability of the other party.
- The degree by which the ailment seeking party has decreased their own earnings and/or work prospects to the advantage of the other party.
- The capability of both parties, once the divorce is finalized, to proportionately pay for and maintain any college or university expenses for any children of the marriage.
- The monetary income of the ailment seeking spouse, as well as matrimonial assets allocated to that party and that same party’s capability to satisfy their own requirements alone.
- The time allotted to receive enough workplace education or be otherwise educated so that the maintenance seeking spouse may acquire suitable work and also as to whether any such relevant education or learning is in fact accessible.
- Unnecessary and unwarranted expenses or the damage, suppression or unlawful disposing of any assets held by the two parties.
- The expense for the ailment seeking party to be in receipt of health insurance and the subsequent decrease in the cost of same for the party from whom ailment is being sought if that same spouse can change an existing family insurance policy to one of worker insurance policy when the divorce is granted.
- The entire compensation payments and legal ruling from behavior which leads to prosecution of either one of the parties when the other party and/or child or children was the injured party.
The case of Rainwater v Rainwater 177 Ariz. 500 869 P 2d 176 (Ariz App 1993) supports this. Commonly in Arizona State the courts decide ailment cases on an individual basis. Courts in Arizona hold that an award of ailment ought to be established upon evidence that the party who is to receive maintenance is unable to sustain regular employment and does not have the capacity to earn enough money with which to support him/herself adequately. An example can be found in the case of Deathridge v Deathridge 140 Ariz 317 681 P 2d (Ariz App 1984). Even if the party who is asking for ailment has little or absolutely no experience in the workplace, this does not mean that he/she is automatically granted ailment if it was the case that the party obtained a considerable sum prior to the divorce becoming finalized. Rowe v Rowe 154 Ariz 616 744 P 2d 717 (Ariz App 1987).
Arizona courts do not see alimony as punitive; rather it is about one party helping the other so that, even after divorce, they can separately maintain the same home comforts they had whilst married. Spousal maintenance can also assist in the sometimes awkward changeover from married to single. If you find yourself in such a position or if you have any questions about spousal maintenance, call Gregory A. Riebesehl of Riebesehl Family Law Offices at (602) 621-0779 for an immediate consultation to see how we can help you obtain spousal maintenance in your divorce proceeding.