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The attorneys at J Lowe Law have vast experience in dealing with Texas laws relating to spousal maintenance in divorce cases. Below is a general summary of the law in Texas relating to spousal maintenance.
In Texas, spousal support is money that one spouse pays to the other temporarily to support the ex-spouse after the divorce. If this money is paid before the divorce is finalized, it is called “temporary spousal support.”
Ways to Obtain Spousal Maintenance
The ways in which a spouse can get an award for spousal maintenance generally include the following:
- The spouse, who would be paying the support, has been convicted of or received deferred adjudication for a family violence offense against the other spouse or the other spouse’s child within two years before filing the divorce or while the divorce is pending. Under this scenario, the length of the marriage does not matter.
- The marriage has lasted for at least 10 years and the following facts apply: the spouse seeking spousal maintenance lacks sufficient property or income to provide for their reasonable needs and is either a) disabled, or b) primary caretaker of a disabled child, or c) lacks earning ability to provide for their minimum reasonable needs.
- The parties agree that spousal maintenance is paid for a certain time period.
Determining the Spouse’s Earning Ability
When determining whether a spouse lacks the earning ability to provide for their minimum reasonable needs, a Court will consider the following: financial resources available to each party once their property is divided by the court; the education and employment skills of the spouses; The time necessary to obtain sufficient education or training to enable the spouse to earn sufficient income, and the availability and feasibility of such training. The court will look at the duration of the marriage, and the spouse’s health and age, The spouse seeking spousal maintenance will also have to show that they have diligently searched for employment, training, and educational opportunities.
Determining How Long Will Spousal Maintenance Be Paid
In Texas, an award of spousal maintenance may not remain in effect for more than five years if: a spouse is awarded spousal maintenance because the other spouse has been convicted or received deferred adjudication for a family violence offense within two years before the filing of the divorce or while the divorce was pending, or if the marriage lasted for at least 10 years but less than 20 years.
In Texas, if the marriage lasted for at least 20 years but less than 30 years, the award may not remain in effect for more than seven years.
In Texas, if the marriage has lasted for 30 years or more, the spousal maintenance award may not remain in effect for more than 10 years.
If you are in need of McKinney, TX divorce lawyer to protect your interests as it relates to spousal maintenance, please contact J Lowe Law.