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Fighting a Claim for Spousal Maintenance

Fighting a Claim for Spousal Maintenance

December 27, 2019

By Johnson/Turner Legal

Divorce is a difficult time for everyone involved. Divorce involves a substantial amount of emotional trauma, even when the case is relatively amicableDivorce mediation and the parties are able to reach an agreement on all of the issues.  In addition to the emotional upheaval, divorce is also typically a very difficult time for the parties in terms of finances.  Both parties will have to rearrange their budgets to reflect the “new normal” of living as a single person.  In some cases, one party may request alimony, which is called spousal maintenance in Minnesota.  If your spouse is requesting spousal maintenance, there are ways you can fight that claim.

One of the ways to fight a claim for spousal maintenance is to demonstrate that the requesting spouse has sufficient property and income to uphold the approximate standard of living established during the marriage.  Although there is no calculator for spousal maintenance like there is for child support, the court will look to whether a spouse actually needs spousal maintenance.  If you can show that your spouse does not require maintenance because he or she is able to self-support, the court may decline to award spousal maintenance.

Another common way to fight spousal maintenance is to show that you do not have the ability to pay the requested award.  In other words, your spouse may be able to show that he or she needs another thousand dollars a month to meet expenses, but if you can show that you simply do not have that extra disposable income, the court will definitely take that into account.  This is especially true if you have agreed to take on a disproportionately large share of the marital debt.

Third, you can fight a claim for spousal maintenance by demonstrating that the duration of award your spouse is requesting is not just or fair.  The longer your marriage, the more likely a court is to make a spousal maintenance award that lasts for years or even until the receiving spouse dies or remarries.  Conversely, if you can show that your marriage is of short duration, a court is not likely to award spousal maintenance that goes on for a long time.

We have extensive experience helping our clients with all types of divorce issues, including spousal maintenance.  Call us today at (320) 299-4249 and schedule a consultation


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