Knoxville Alimony Attorney
In a Tennessee divorce, the court may order one spouse to pay alimony to the other spouse for a certain period of time, or even indefinitely. Whether the court orders alimony, and if so, how much and for how long, are all determined according to a number of different factors. Knoxville family law attorney Patrick L. Looper helps divorcing couples agree upon an appropriate alimony award and represents clients seeking or opposing alimony awards in Knox County Chancery and Circuit courts. Learn more about alimony below, and contact experienced Knoxville alimony attorney Patrick L. Looper, Attorney at Law, for help in your divorce or post-divorce modification.
Different types of alimony in Tennessee divorce cases
Alimony is not automatically awarded in a Tennessee divorce. First, one party must request alimony and demonstrate that alimony is needed. The court looks at a number of different factors to decide whether the requesting party in fact needs alimony and also whether the party being asked to pay alimony has the ability to pay it.
If convinced by the testimony and evidence presented that one party needs alimony and the other party has the ability to pay, the court will decide what type of alimony to award, how long the award should last, and how much the alimony award should be. There are four different kinds of alimony in Tennessee, namely:
In Futuro – Also known as periodic alimony, in futuro alimony is awarded to allow a former spouse to maintain the same lifestyle that was experienced during the marriage. In futuro alimony is more likely to be awarded after a long-term marriage, where the receiving spouse has been out of the workforce for decades and is unlikely to be able to reenter the workforce very easily.
Transitional – This type of alimony is awarded for a shorter, defined period of time to allow an ex-spouse to adjust to a to new living arrangement and lifestyle on a single income.
Rehabilitative – If a divorcing spouse needs some extra time and perhaps further education or job training to become self-supporting, the court may award rehabilitative alimony for that purpose.
In Solido – Also known as lump sum alimony, this kind of alimony can be used to make up for an uneven property division if, for instance, one spouse was given a valuable asset that could not be divided, or one spouse chose to keep an asset entirely and offset the value through alimony. Although a lump sum is awarded, in solido alimony does not have to be paid all at once and can be ordered to be paid in installments over a period of time.
There is also a form of alimony called pendente lite, which can be awarded temporarily while the divorce is ongoing to support a party until the divorce is final.
How is alimony decided in Tennessee?
There are a dozen different factors the court looks at in deciding alimony issues. These factors include:
- The relative earning capacity and financial resources of each party
- The relative education and training of each party
- The duration of the marriage
- The age and mental condition of each party
- The physical condition of each party
- Whether the custodial parent should work outside the home or stay home to raise the kids
- The separate assets of each party
- The division of marital property
- The standard of living established during the marriage
- Each party’s contributions to the marriage as a wage earner or homemaker, and whether one party contributed to the education or career advancement of the other
- The relative fault of the parties
- Other relevant factors, including the tax consequences to each party of an alimony award
The information provided to the court regarding these factors will form the basis for the judge’s decision. Attorney Patrick Looper can build your case for or against alimony and present a persuasive argument to the court to advocate for your interests in any proposed alimony award or modification. Most types of alimony can be modified upon a showing of a material change in circumstances, such as a change in income, or if one party dies, remarries or begins living with another. Prenuptial agreements can also set the amount and duration of alimony in advance, or provide that alimony will not be awarded in the event of divorce. As a comprehensive Knoxville family law attorney, Patrick Looper can help you in any of these situations.
Help with Alimony from a Knowledgeable and Experienced Knoxville Alimony Attorney
For help with the issue of alimony in your Tennessee divorce, or to address alimony in a prenuptial agreement or post-divorce modification, call Patrick L. Looper, Attorney at Law for a free consultation at 865-229-3164.