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Maryland Spousal Support/Maintenance/Alimony Factors

In Maryland the support payments (if any) can certainly influence how the marital property distribution is awarded, which is why it can become a very intricate part of the final outcome of any divorce. Keeping this in mind, if you and your spouse are unable to reach and agreement on this issue, the Circuit Court will order support from one spouse to the other on a case-by-case basis as follows:

The court shall determine the amount of alimony and for how long by considering all the factors necessary for a fair and equitable award, including: (A)      the ability of the spouse desiring alimony to become self supporting; (B)      the time necessary for the spouse seeking alimony to gain sufficient education or training to enable that party to find suitable employment; (C)      the standard of living while married; (D)      the length of the marriage; (E)      the contributions, monetary and nonmonetary, of each party to the well-being of the family; (F)      the circumstances that contributed to the estrangement of the spouses; (G)      the ages of the spouses; (H)      the health conditions of the spouses; (I)      the ability of the party from whom alimony is sought to meet that spouse’s needs while meeting the needs of the spouse seeking alimony; (J)      any mutual agreement between the spouses; (K)      the financial needs and financial resources of each spouse, including: (L)      whether the award would cause a spouse who is a resident of a related institution and from whom alimony is sought to become eligible for medical assistance earlier than would otherwise occur.

The court may award alimony for an indefinite period, if the court finds that: (A)      due to age, illness, infirmity, or disability, the party seeking alimony cannot reasonably be expected to make substantial progress toward becoming self-supporting; or (B)      even after the party seeking alimony will have made as much progress toward becoming self-supporting as can reasonably be expected, the respective standards of living of the parties will be unconscionably disparate. (Maryland Code - Family Law Chapter - Section: 11-106)

You can also read more about Maryland spousal support in the Maryland state statutes located at: http://mlis.state.md.us/.