A Payment Made between Two Parties after a Divorce: Alimony

A payment made between two parties after a divorce is known as an alimony payment. Divorce is difficult and can often lead to hard feelings between the two parties involved. One issue that can often be contested during a divorce is alimony payments.

This can be a contentious issue, as both parties may feel they are entitled to receive alimony payments. In this blog post, we will discuss alimony payments in more detail and answer some common questions about them.

a payment made between two parties after a divorce

What is Alimony Payment, and How Does This Work? 

Alimony payments are a way for one spouse to financially support the other after a divorce. The payments can be made in a lump sum or installments and are typically paid by the wealthier spouse to the less wealthy spouse.

Alimony payments are typically based on the length of the marriage and the financial needs of the spouse receiving support. Most payments are made monthly and continue for a set period. 

In some states, however, alimony payments may be awarded permanently. This is typically only granted in cases where one spouse cannot work due to age or disability. Awards of permanent alimony are less common than they used to be, as more spouses can now support themselves financially after divorce.

In the United States, alimony payments are typically only made if there is a significant difference in income between the two parties involved in a divorce. For example, if one party earns a significantly higher salary than the other party, they may be ordered to make alimony payments.

The payments are usually ordered by a court and are generally tax-deductible for the paying spouse and taxable income for the receiving spouse.  Additionally, the payments may be modified or terminated if the circumstances of either party change.

Alimony payments can be a crucial source of financial support for divorcing spouses, particularly if they have been out of the workforce for an extended period of time.

For this reason, it is important to consult with an experienced family law attorney to ensure that you receive the full amount of support to which you are entitled.

What is Alimony? Who pays for it, and for how long? I think you should watch this video to learn more about alimony payment after the divorce:

FAQs On a Payment Made between Two Parties after a Divorce

What is the process to get alimony after divorce?

Since alimony laws vary from state to state, the process of getting alimony after the divorce is not the same for all. However, a few general steps tend to be followed in most cases. 

Typically, the spouse seeking alimony will file a petition with the court, and a hearing will be held before a judge to determine if alimony should be awarded and, if so, how much.

In some cases, a mediator may be used to help the two parties agree on alimony payments. If an agreement is reached, it will be put in writing and signed by both parties. 

If the court decides that alimony should be awarded, formal order will be issued, and payments will begin to be made according to the terms set forth. It should be noted that alimony is not always permanent; in some cases, it may only be ordered for a specific period. 

For example, if one spouse needs financial assistance while completing schooling or training, alimony may only be paid during that time. Once the individual can support him or herself, alimony payments will stop.

If you are seeking a divorce and think you may be entitled to alimony payments, speak with an experienced family law attorney who can help protect your rights.

What are the different types of alimony?

A court may award four types of alimony in a divorce: temporary, rehabilitative, permanent, and reimbursement.

#1. Temporary Alimony

Temporary alimony is typically awarded to a spouse who needs financial assistance for a limited time after the divorce. This alimony is usually only ordered in marriages that last a relatively short time.

#2. Rehabilitative Alimony

Rehabilitative alimony is awarded to a spouse who needs financial assistance while they obtain the education or training necessary to reenter the workforce. The payments are typically made for a set period and end when the recipient becomes employed.

#3. Permanent Alimony

Permanent alimony is paid until either party’s death or the recipient’s remarriage. This type of alimony is typically only ordered in marriages that last a very long time or when one spouse cannot work due to age or disability.

#4. Reimbursement Alimony

Reimbursement alimony is paid to a spouse who supported the other during their education or training. This type of alimony is typically only ordered when the marriage lasts a very short time.

How is alimony payment determined?

There are a few factors that will be considered when determining alimony payments, such as:

  • The length of the marriage
  • The financial needs of each spouse
  • The earning capacity of each spouse
  • The standard of living during the marriage
  • The age and health of each spouse
  • The contributions of each spouse to the marriage

What are some common misconceptions about alimony payments?

There are a few common misconceptions about alimony payments that we would like to clear up:

  • Men only pay alimony: This is not always the case, as alimony can be ordered for either party in a divorce.
  • Alimony is only paid if the marriage is long: While alimony payments are more likely to be ordered in a long-term marriage, they can also be ordered in a shorter marriage if there is a significant disparity in income.
  • Alimony is forever: In most cases, alimony payments are not ordered for an indefinite period. Payments may be ordered for a set time or until the receiving spouse remarries or reaches a certain financial milestone.

There is also a misconception that wife gets more alimony if her ex-husband remarries. Most of the time court doesn’t allow this claim.

Who pays alimony the most?

There is a common misconception that men always pay alimony after a divorce. While it’s true that men are more likely to be ordered to pay spousal support, it mostly depends upon the earning capacity of each spouse.

If one spouse is a stay-at-home parent or earns a significantly lower income than the other, they’re more likely to receive alimony payments. So, we can say that the individual who earns the most will be responsible for the alimony.

If the wife filed for divorce, can she get alimony?

In most cases, if a wife files for divorce, she is eligible to receive alimony payments from her husband. The amount of alimony a wife receives depends on various factors, including the length of the marriage, each spouse’s earning capacity, and whether or not minor children are involved.

In contrast, the court may order the wife to pay alimony if she was the primary earner during the marriage and her husband could not support himself. Whether a wife will be ordered to pay alimony and how much will again depend on various factors unique to each divorce case.

What is direct deposit alimony payments?

Direct deposit alimony payments are a type of alimony payment automatically deposited into the recipient’s bank account. A court typically orders this type of payment in cases where one spouse is unable or unwilling to make regular alimony payments.

Direct deposit alimony payments can help ensure the recipient’s spouse receives the full amount of alimony they are owed regularly. 

This type of payment can also help make it easier for the recipient to budget and plan for their expenses, as they will know exactly when they will receive their payments.

How to avoid paying alimony?

There is no surefire way to avoid paying alimony, as each divorce case is unique, and the decision of whether or not to award alimony is up to the court. 

However, you can do a few things to lower your chances of being ordered to pay alimony or to reduce the amount you may be ordered to pay.

Those things include: negotiating a prenuptial agreement before getting married, staying married for a shorter period, and earning a comparable income to your spouse.

You should also remember that if you are ordered to pay alimony, you may be able to deduct the payments from your taxes. Consult with a tax advisor or an attorney to see if this is an option in your case.

What happens if I stop paying alimony?

If you stop paying alimony, there can be several consequences. First, the court may order you to pay a lump sum of the unpaid alimony, plus interest and any attorney’s fees incurred by your ex-spouse.

The court may also order that your wages be garnished or a lien be placed on your property. In some cases, the court may even find you in contempt of court and order that you be fined or jailed. 

If you are ordered to pay alimony and have trouble making the payments, you should contact an attorney to discuss your options.

Is money acquired after separation part of the marital fund?

In most cases, any money a spouse earns after separation is not considered part of the marital fund and is not subject to division in a divorce. However, there are some exceptions to this rule.

For example, suppose a couple has been separated for a long time, and one spouse has been paying alimony to the other. In that case, the court may decide that any money the spouse earns after separation should be considered part of the marital fund and subject to division in a divorce.

Another exception is if a couple has a joint bank account and one spouse withdraws money after separation. In this case, the court may decide that the money withdrawn is part of the marital fund and should be divided in a divorce.

How long does alimony last?

The duration of alimony payments is decided on a case-by-case basis. In general, though, the longer the marriage lasts, the longer alimony will be paid. For example, if a couple was married for 20 years or more, alimony will likely be paid significantly after the divorce.

The court will also consider the spouses’ age, earning potential, and financial needs when determining how long alimony should be paid. In some cases, alimony may be ordered for a set time, while in others, it may be ordered until one spouse dies or remarries.


Alimony payments can be a complex issue to navigate, but we hope this article has helped to clear up some common misconceptions. These payments are determined by several factors, including the marriage’s length and each spouse’s financial needs.

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