Alabama Divorce & Finances

Separating out joint finances during a divorce can be a stressful process. It’s understandable that you might have some questions about what will happen to your joint finances after the divorce. How will you divide property?  What are the tax consequences of your divorce? Do you have any estate planning issues that need to be settled? Will there be spousal support payments awarded, and if so, what are the specifics of these payments? The following are laws specific to Alabama Divorce and Finances.

 

Alabama Property Division/Community Property/Debts:

Alabama is an “equitable distribution” state. This distinction means that, during a divorce, marital property will be distributed on terms considered to be fair. Note that “fair” does not necessarily mean equal. In making the determination of division of property, the court will consider, among other factors, the contributions of each spouse to the marital estate, the total value of the properties of the parties, the economic circumstances of each party, any misconduct that may have occurred, and the amount of spousal support awarded, if any.

Alabama Spousal Support:

There is no automatic obligation for either spouse to support the other in the event of a divorce. Where the court does grant spousal support (also called maintenance or alimony), it does so on a case-by-case basis and in consideration of many factors, including:

  1. The financial resources of the party seeking support,
  2. The time and input of resources necessary for the party seeking maintenance to find appropriate employment and sufficient education or training for that employment,
  3. The established subjective standard of living during the marriage,
  4. Marriage duration,
  5. Physical and emotional condition of the party seeking maintenance,
  6. The ability of the would-be payor spouse to meet his/her own needs while meeting those of the other spouse, and
  7. Any other factors the court deems relevant.

Note that the spousal award amount and duration, once determined, are not set in stone. The award can be modified or eliminated by the court when circumstances justify doing so, including the receiving party’s entering into another marriage or similar arrangement, or a material change in the financial circumstances of a party.

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