In September 2011, Gov. Deval Patrick signed into law the Alimony Reform Act, which went into effect in March 2012. In order to gain benefits of this new law and to understand the intricacies of obtaining alimony, you will need a Boston Alimony Lawyer. The most prominent features of the Act are the provisions that end payment when the payor retires or when the payee is shown to have “cohabitated” with another, and the limits imposed on alimony duration based on the length of the marriage.
The Act provides for several different types of alimony: 1.) Rehabilitative alimony is awarded to allow a spouse to become economically independent through job training or gaining employment. This alimony cannot last more than five years, and terminates upon remarriage of the receiving spouse; 2.) Reimbursement alimony is for contribution to the financial resources of the payor, as in cases where the payee supported the payor while he or she obtained a professional degree. However, this kind of award is available only to those who have been married five years or less. For marriages of this duration, transitional alimony is also allowable, for the purposes of allowing the payee spouse to adjust to a new lifestyle or location as a result of the divorce; 3.) General term alimony is a periodic payment that doesn’t fit into the other categories.
A major change to all of the types of alimony is that there are now limits on duration based upon the length of marriage and type of award. For couples married less than five years, alimony can be no longer than 50% the months of the marriage (ex. If married two years, alimony can only last for one year maximum). For couples that were married between five and ten years, alimony can continue no longer than 60% of the months of the marriage. For a marriage between 10-15 years, alimony can be paid no longer than 70% of the marriage. A 15-20 year marriage means payments cannot last more than 80% of the number of months of the marriage. For marriages over twenty years, indefinite payments are permitted. The Act also contains a provision that mandates that general term alimony be terminated when the payor reaches the full retirement age (but is not necessarily retired).
If you need a Boston Alimony Lawyer, Contact Attorney Maura Melcher today for more information.