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Spousal maintenance is the amount of financial support that is paid to one party following the breakdown of their marriage/relationship.
The amount of maintenance to be paid (if at all) will depend on various factors (these are referred to below).
When an application for spousal maintenance is being considered, the Court will look at various factors to determine how much maintenance ought to be paid.
The factors that are looked at include things like:
If you were married, applications for spouse maintenance must be made within 12 months of your divorce becoming final.
If you were in a de facto relationship, your applications for de facto partner maintenance must be made within 2 years of the breakdown of your de facto relationship.
If you do not apply within these time limits, you will need special permission of a court. This is not always granted.
If an order for spousal maintenance is made, then that amount must be paid until the period for which the Order requires spousal maintenance to be paid expires.
An end date is usually always included in a spousal maintenance order, that might be a date in the future or upon an event occurring – for example, the party receiving the payment becoming employed on a full-time basis.
If the Order that is made does not specify an endpoint, then an application to court will be required to seek an order terminating the obligation to pay.
There are certain events that will terminate the liability to pay spousal maintenance. They are:
You are not entitled to maintenance if you marry another person unless the court otherwise orders.
If you start a new de facto relationship the court will take into account the financial relationship between you and your new de facto partner when considering whether you are able to support yourself adequately.
Everyone’s situation is unique. It is always sensible to consult with a family lawyer to discuss your situation and obtain advice about how this process specifically applies to you.
O’Shea Dyer Townsville has experienced family lawyers who practice exclusively in Family Law.
We offer first appointments at a low fixed fee so everyone can afford to obtain advice about their situation.
Please call us on 47 725 155 to make an appointment.