In Ohio, what used to be known as alimony is now called spousal support. Spousal support is paid from one spouse to another and may be paid during or after the divorce. Spousal support is based upon the income and resources of each party.
Spousal support is determined by fourteen factors set forth in Ohio law. These include:
In addition to the statutory factors, the court may consider any information it deems relevant in determining the amount and duration of spousal support.
Spousal support can be set to continue:
The purpose of spousal support is generally to give the receiving party the opportunity to be self-supporting, so courts usually prefer for spousal support to end after a specified time.
The divorce decree may say that a spousal support award is modifiable, meaning it can be changed later on. In that case, the court is granted authority (jurisdiction) to hear a request (motion) for modification, which can be granted only if a material change in either party’s circumstances justifies the change. If the divorce decree does not specifically grant the court jurisdiction to modify a spousal support award, the award is non-modifiable.
Unlike child support, spousal support is not automatically ordered. Whether it is awarded, how much is to be paid, and how long it lasts, are in the court’s discretion. Therefore, it is essential to have an experienced attorney to make one’s case on these issues. Failing to secure the right legal help can mean shutting the door forever on the possibility of spousal support.
Ruby & Associates regularly handles spousal support issues during and after divorce cases, including motions to modify spousal support. To learn more about how we can help you with your spousal support matter, contact our office at (330) 867-1405.