While parties usually enter a marriage with the best hopes and intentions, in some cases, the couples are better off separate. Depending on their situations, it may be possible for parties to seek spousal support.
Whether you are looking to receive or may have to pay the support payments, it is important to understand how it works. There are a few major aspects to understand in regard to spousal support in Alaska.
Types of support
While some states call support payments to a spouse alimony, Alaskan courts refer to it as spousal support. The courts may award such payments both before and after divorce proceedings. There are two types of payments that a divorced spouse may receive:
- Reorientation: aid a party in adjusting to the decrease in household income
- Rehabilitation: provide financial support to aid a party in gaining job skills or education
Depending on the situation, the court may award either one of the types of support or both. In either case, the receiving party has to petition for and provide proof of the need for the support payments.
In Alaska, judges award support for a set time and purpose. In accordance with the Alaska spousal support statute, there are a few reasons why the court may provide the award:
- Division of property and debt
- Length of marriage
- Contributions to the household
- Previous education and work history
It is important to understand that the court may award support may regardless of fault for the divorce. Some types of marital misconduct may not constitute divorce, but it may have weight in deciding the support award amounts. Spousal support is also separate from child support payments.
In certain cases, it is possible to seek modifications to an award. Usually, the paying party seeks modifications in cases where the receiving party is not utilizing the funds as intended. Each party must be able to defend its position; therefore, having the right evidence is important in supporting a claim.