Maintenance, which is also sometimes referred to as spousal support or alimony. Generally, maintenance is designed to ensure that the spouse who earns less income does not suffer financially due to the break-up. In Missouri, there are a few different types of maintenance that may be available, including periodic, temporary, and permanent alimony. Continue reading to learn more about them and how such decisions are rendered.
Maintenance in Missouri
Depending on the unique details of your marriage, the court may award one or a combination of the types of maintenance available in the state.
The types of maintenance that may be ordered in Missouri include but are not limited to the following:
- Temporary maintenance: Judges order this type of maintenance for spouses who need support while the divorce is still pending. Temporary maintenance does not necessarily mean a judge will order periodic or permanent support and, in some cases, support may end once the divorce is finalized.
- Periodic maintenance for a period of time: This may also be known as rehabilitative maintenance. This form of short-term support is typically paid monthly, giving the receiving spouse the time to acquire education or job skills for employment. If it has been many years since the receiving spouse was in the workforce, courts are often understanding that it may take a considerable amount of time to acquire the skills to reenter the job market.
- Modifiable maintenance or Non-modifiable maintenance: If the maintenance is subject to modification, then in the future the maintenance amount may be modified, upon the party requesting the modification satisfying the legal requirements for modification.
Below is a list of factors a judge will consider when determining maintenance, include but are not limited to the following:
- The financial needs of each spouse and their ability to be independent
- The earning capacity of each spouse
- How much time the supported spouse needs to acquire employment
- The obligations and assets of both spouses
- The duration of the marriage
- The age, physical, and emotional condition of each spouse
After maintenance is ordered, if the maintenance is subject to modification, then it may be possible to have it modified if the circumstances of either spouse substantially change.
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