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How much alimony will I get in my divorce?

If your spouse was the primary source of income in your marriage, the idea of divorce may leave you facing a frightening unknown. This is particularly true for divorcing spouses who spent a good deal of time at home as caregiver, childcare provider or other domestic role that limits your employability due to lack of recent work history or current skills. When you are facing the prospect of becoming a self-sustaining entity, alimony can ease you into the process of creating a new, independent life for yourself while ensuring you receive fair support commensurate to the time and labor you put into the marriage. But how much alimony will a Massachusetts court award in your divorce?

That answer is not as simple as a single concrete value. Massachusetts courts describe a number of determining factors evaluated when deciding alimony amounts. If you are the receiving partner, it includes your employability, the length of the marriage, the type of domestic duties performed in the marriage, your physical and mental health, children and child custody, additional assets and resources, age, your spouse's employed income and many other factors. In some ways alimony can be considered compensation for a marriage of unpaid domestic labor, but in truth it is far more complex than that.

Generally an alimony payment is not enough to fully support you, save for in instances where your lifestyle and the lifestyle of your former partner are separated by large discrepancies. The average estimate  for alimony is between 30 and 35 percent of the difference in your gross income and your former spouse's gross income. Other factors may raise or lower this number either at the time of original judgment, or in later instances with alimony adjustments.

This has been an informational post only, intended only for educational purposes. Do not use this post as a substitute for legal counsel.

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