Photo of the legal professionals at Harry Lewis Co., LPA
Photo of the legal professionals at Harry Lewis Co., LPA

Trusted In The Columbus Area
For More Than 40 Years

Photo of the legal professionals at Harry Lewis Co., LPA

Trusted In The Columbus Area For More Than 40 Years

Spousal Support: What To Expect

Spousal support in Ohio is voluntary or court-ordered payments from one spouse to the other. Also known as alimony and spousal maintenance, the money provided can be temporary during the divorce process or awarded as part of the divorce decree. While spousal support is typically an ongoing cash payment, it can also take the form of real or personal property, or a lump sum payment.

Whether you wish to receive spousal support as part of your divorce or you face the prospect of paying spousal support, you will need the advocacy of a skilled attorney. With more than 40 years of experience helping people in Columbus and throughout Ohio with family law matters, Harry Lewis Co., LPA, can represent you.

How Do Ohio Courts Determine Spousal Support?

At Harry Lewis Co., LPA, one of the questions that we receive most frequently is how the courts determine spousal support. The fast-and-easy answer is that there is no fast-and-easy answer. Several factors contribute to the issuance of spousal support as well as the amount.

Family courts in Ohio examine several factors in each individual case. These factors include:

  • The income of each spouse
  • The earning potential of each spouse
  • The education or vocational training of each spouse
  • Each spouse’s contribution to the marriage
  • The duration of the marriage
  • The property, assets and debts of each spouse

Formulas vary. Courts use their discretion for both permanent and temporary support, considering various factors and the receiving spouse’s needs. The standard of living pre-separation or when marital problems arise is also considered.

Do you suspect that your spouse is hiding assets? If so, you no doubt feel concerned about how it will affect your divorce. We can help you discover hidden assets and seek a fair and equitable asset division arrangement.

Spousal support is a possibility for not only divorce and dissolution, but also legal separation or annulments. Every case is different. The best way to get an accurate assessment of your future spousal support arrangement is to speak with a divorce lawyer.

Can Spousal Support Be Paid While The Divorce Is Still In Progress?

Yes. Temporary spousal support, also referred to as alimony pendente lite, can be ordered or agreed to while a divorce is in progress. This is a payment made from one spouse to another to help the latter cover the basic costs of living such as groceries, housing, transportation and healthcare expenses.

Temporary spousal support automatically ends when the divorce is finalized. The amount of temporary spousal support ordered or agreed to while a divorce is in progress does not guarantee the same amount of spousal support post-divorce. In fact, having temporary spousal support during the divorce does not guarantee spousal support post-divorce at all. These are separate considerations, though if temporary spousal support is necessary it is more likely that it will be necessary for a longer term following the divorce.

How Long Does Spousal Support Last?

The length of time that spousal support payments will continue depends on the terms of the award. Ohio courts have discretion on a case-by-case basis, accounting for certain circumstances and specific factors considered. Typically, there is a cutoff date included in the final divorce decree.

If one party believes that the amount of spousal support should be changed, or that payments should be stopped prior to the originally determined cutoff date, a request can be made to modify payments. Spousal support modification requires change of circumstances not taken into account in the original award. Examples might include a change in income or remarriage.

Spousal support payors must not terminate payments to payees without taking the appropriate legal steps. Doing so could result in serious legal repercussions.

We are available to assist with requests to change or stop spousal support payments.

Learn More About Spousal Support In A Free Consultation

Contact Harry Lewis Co., LPA, today to schedule an initial consultation with our lawyer about your divorce and spousal support case. To reach us, call 614-721-6175 or send us an email.