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Can I Get Spousal Support If My Divorce Case Is Pending?

Can I Get Spousal Support If My Divorce Case Is Pending?

You’re getting a divorce. Not only is it taking an emotional toll on you, but a financial one as well. You may have put your work on hold while you were married, or you are facing some sky-high bills due to your divorce. Now, you’re wondering: Can I get spousal support if my divorce case is pending? By finding out the answer, you can determine your next steps.

Boudreaux Hunter & Associates, LLC in Houston, Texas are certified in mediation, take a collaborative approach with their clients to reach solutions that work for their families, and are devoted entirely to the practice of family law. We are fierce advocates for our clients and we’d be happy to assist you with your divorce. Reach out to us today for an initial consultation.

What Is Spousal Support?

Typically, payments made to one spouse by another, for the spouses benefit, during or after a divorce are referred to as spousal support. In Texas, that comes in two forms. Support paid during the pendency of a divorce is called temporary spousal support. Support paid after a divorce is finalized is called spousal maintenance. Texas does not have alimony, however parties may agree to contractual alimony if they so choose. Spousal maintenance has certain qualifications that must be met prior to being authorized.

You can work with a divorce lawyer to request spousal maintenance from your current or ex-spouse.

Can I Get Spousal Support During Divorce Proceedings?

Yes, you can receive spousal support during divorce proceedings in Texas. If the support is paid prior to the divorce being finalized, it’s called temporary spousal support.

The Different Types of Spousal Maintenance

In Texas, a party seeking payments after the completion of a divorce is seeking court ordered spousal maintenance. As previously mentioned, Texas will not order alimony in a divorce case. However, parties may agree to contractual alimony.

With contractual alimony, two spouses agree on the amount, method and form of payment the dependent person will receive. With court ordered spousal maintenance, a family judge orders a spouse to pay the dependent a certain amount of money every month that will be based upon a variety of factors and assist the receiving spouse meet their minimum reasonable needs.

Getting Spousal Support in Texas

If you and your spouse are on good terms, you may be able to come up with a agreement for temporary spousal support or spousal maintenance on your own and then take it to the court for approval. For example, perhaps you put your career on hold to take care of your children, and your spouse recognizes that. As a way to thank you for doing that – and to ensure you have the money you need during the divorce and after – they may agree to pay you spousal maintenance.

If you and your spouse do not agree, then you will have to prove why a court should award you temporary spousal support and/or court ordered spousal maintenance to provide you with funds during divorce proceedings and/or after your divorce is finalized.

A judge is going to take a number of factors into consideration when reviewing a possible award of spousal maintenance. First, you’ll need to prove that you qualify for an award of spousal maintenance. A judge is also going to look at your financial resources following the divorce – as well as your spouse’s – and how paying spousal maintenance will affect you and your spouse’s ability to cover your expenses.

They will also consider each spouse’s potential earning power or education. A judge will look at your age, earning capabilities, employment history, emotional and physical condition, and they will take into consideration your employment skills and education. These are just a few of the factors that courts consider.

How Much Spousal Support Could You Receive?

Unlike in other states, in Texas, there is a limit on how much spousal support you can receive. You cannot receive more than $5,000 per month or more than 20% of the paying spouse’s average monthly gross income – whichever is less.

How Long Spousal Support Lasts

You may get temporary spousal support during your divorce proceedings. Spousal maintenance payments may be awarded following the completion of your divorce.

Keep in mind that there are time limits on how long spousal support will last. The primary consideration for courts when awarded spousal maintenance is rehabilitative in nature. What will help the receiving spouse meet his or her minimum reasonable needs? It may last for five years if you were married for less than 10 years and the supporting spouse ended up being convicted of family violence.

It’s may last for five years if you and your spouse were married for more than 10 years but less than 20 years. Seven years may be ordered if you were married for at least 20 years but not more than 30 years, and 10 years is as possible duration of award if you were married for at least 30 or more years.

The maintenance order is specifically designed to assist the receiving individual meet their minimum reasonable needs. It is completely discretionary in divorce cases. Additionally, spousal maintenance typically will end if the supported spouse gets remarried, either spouse passes away, the supported spouse lives with a third party they are dating or in a romantic relationship with, or a court reviews the order and the judge decides it’s no longer in effect.

Updating a Spousal Support Award

The spouse who is paying spousal maintenance could be worried about making payments if their income changes. For example, they may lose their job and not be able to afford payments anymore. If this happens, then they should continue paying as much as they can each month until they can request that a judge changes the order.
If they fail to make payments, then they could be subject to a number of different consequences.

Seeking Spousal Support?

If you are seeking temporary spousal support or spousal maintenance, then it’s best to hire a divorce lawyer to help you. They will assist you when it comes to proving why you need support. They will also be in your corner and provide you with the necessary support during this tough time.

Contact Boudreaux Hunter & Associates, LLC

If you need help with spousal support during your divorce, you can reach out to Boudreaux Hunter & Associates, LLC for help. We’ll work hard on your support agreements or requesting an order from the court, and be your source of support in your time of need. Make sure you get in touch online or by calling us at (713) 333-4430. We look forward to hearing from you.

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