Barbara J. Katzenberg, Attorney at Law
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How alimony maintains the standard of living in Massachusetts

In Worcester, Massachusetts, divorce can be a devastating experience to couples. Enduring the pain of splitting up proves to be difficult to parents as well as children. There are instances when one partner spent most of their marriage as a stay-at-home parent, taking care of the children, doing the household chores and handling the family budget. Because of these circumstances, the spouse may have a hard time looking for a job due to lack of experience.

Alimony, or spousal support, may provide assistance to a spouse after a divorce to help them maintain the standard of living they were accustomed to. The financial status of the spouse needing support and the financial capability of the supporting spouse are considered when deciding the amount of alimony. Alimony is not meant to be lifetime support, however. When a spouse receives support, they should take the opportunity to build an independent, new life in which they can support their own lifestyle.

A woman with three children who experienced divorce had a hard time figuring out what to do after her marriage dissolved. She was a full-time mother during the marriage so it was difficult for her to make a living after the divorce. Then she discovered relationship marketing, a job that involves mentoring people and helping them to connect. The work is flexible for mothers and children. The woman regained her confidence and self-discipline, and is a great example of a person recovering from life's adversities.

The Alimony Reform Act of 2011 changed the way alimony was handled in divorce settlements. If both couples agree to include spousal support in their divorce settlement, it will be based on the length of marriage. A spouse may want to consult an experienced family law attorney on this matter in order to gain better control of their current situation.

Source: St. Augustine News, "How I Found Meaning In My Life After Divorce," Betsy Smith, Nov. 3, 2012

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