Skillful Washington, D.C. Attorney Handles Alimony Issues

Determined family lawyer represents clients in spousal support matters

Spousal support can become one of the most hotly debated issues in a divorce. At the law firm of Joel W. Anders, in Washington D.C., we employ our extensive legal experience to prevent alimony disputes when possible and resolve them as efficiently when they do occur. Our attorney negotiates legally enforceable alimony settlements, and seeks satisfactory orders from the courts of the District of Columbia and Maryland. Serving the DC metro area community since 1978, our mission is to help our clients secure and protect their financial independence.

Experienced lawyer explains purposes of permanent and temporary alimony

Spousal support is money paid by one party to the other in a divorce. This money is intended to help the financially disadvantaged party establish an independent life.

There are three types of alimony payments available in the District Columbia and Maryland:

  • Temporary alimony — Sometimes referred to as pendente lite alimony, temporary alimony can be ordered by the court while a divorce is in progress. The order ends when the divorce is finalized, at which point another order may go into effect.
  • Rehabilitative alimony — The most common type of spousal support, rehabilitative alimony is awarded for a specific period of time. These term-limited payments are designed to give the receiving spouse the time needed to obtain financial independence through higher education, job training, work experience or another means.
  • Indefinite alimony — An order for indefinite alimony has no end date. Permanent alimony is rare, and is typically reserved for cases where one spouse’s age or health prevents them from being able to support themselves financially.  

The court considers several factors before determining how much spousal support is appropriate and the length of time for which the support will last. These factors may include:

  • Age and health of each spouse
  • Duration of the marriage
  • Each spouse's work history during the marriage
  • Each spouse's financial contributions to the marriage
  • Each spouse’s financial needs and resources, including income-earning potential and retirement benefits
  • Time necessary for the receiving spouse to gain sufficient education or job training
  • Standard of living established during the marriage
  • Circumstances which contributed to the estrangement of spouses

An experienced attorney can help you establish an agreement that will meet your needs. When you select our firm, we will commit ourselves to creating appropriate alimony arrangements regardless of the how complex or strained the situation might seem.

Accomplished DC metro area lawyer pursues modifications to alimony orders

A modification to a court order may be granted if the financial circumstances of one or both parties have changed substantially since the time the order was granted. This is true for both term-limited and permanent alimony.

If you want to modify a court order issued before the end of 2018, it is important to familiarize yourself with how the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 changed the ways alimony is treated under federal tax law. Payers in alimony agreements made prior to January 1, 2019 were able to deduct payments for income tax purposes, while recipients had to report payments as income. Under new agreements, payers cannot deduct payments and recipients do not count payments as income. A modification that changes the terms of your alimony payments may state that you are now bound by the rules of the law enacted after your initial order was granted.

When you have questions or concerns about seeking a modification to your order, our experienced family law attorney is here to help. We will guide you through the process of preparing the necessary documents, filing a petition and asserting your needs to the court.

Contact a seasoned District of Columbia spousal support attorney for legal consultation

The law office of Joel W. Anders, in Washington D.C. assists area clients with spousal support negotiations, modifications and disputes. To schedule a free initial consultation with our office, call 202-466-4334 or contact us online.


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