One of the most common fears spouses have about an impending divorce is whether they will be required to pay alimony (also referred to as “spousal support”) or if they will be eligible to receive alimony. In Nebraska there is not a specific calculation that determines whether alimony will be awarded. Rather, an award of alimony is left to the discretion of the judge or negotiating between the parties. There are several factors the court may consider when making an alimony determination, but the outcome will be most impacted by the unique facts of your case.
In Nebraska, alimony and spousal support have the same meaning. Alimony or spousal support is a court-ordered payment from one party to another, often to enable the recipient spouse to become economically independent.
Some of the factors that may affect your eligibility to receive alimony are:
- The length of your marriage
- Your contributions to the marriage, including interruption of your career for the care of children or to support your spouse’s career
- Your education, work history, health, income, and earning capacity
- Your need for support
- Your spouse’s ability to pay support.
Unlike child support, Nebraska does not have an alimony guideline or calculator to determine exactly how much alimony, if any, will be awarded. Rather, the judge will take into consideration you and your spouse’s incomes and expenses to determine an appropriate alimony amount. Whether child support is ordered in your case will also be taken into consideration.
Like your eligibility to receive alimony, how long you will receive monthly spousal support payments will depend on the circumstances surrounding your marriage. You may receive only temporary alimony while your divorce case is pending, or you may receive alimony for several years after the divorce is final.
If you receive alimony pursuant to a court-order, you must pay income taxes on the amount received. Likewise, if you are required to pay alimony, your alimony payments are tax deductible. This is contrary to child support, where the payment of child support is not tax deductible and the receipt of child support is not treated as income for tax purposes.
If alimony is likely to be an issue in your case, it’s important to work with an experienced attorney who can provide insight regarding your position on alimony and make a recommendation based on the facts of your case. Contact our office to schedule a consultation with one of our experienced alimony attorneys to find out if you’d likely be required to pay or eligible to receive alimony in your divorce.