This is the first post in a series of articles discussing spousal support or alimony awards in Little Rock, Arkansas. Few things create as much financial distress on families as divorce. When a couple goes from two incomes to one or when a non-working spouse loses the support of the sole breadwinner, it may be difficult or impossible to recover. Under Arkansas law, when a divorce results in a significant financial disparity, the Court may be asked to award spousal support. Depending upon the circumstances, alimony may be awarded temporarily during the pendency of the case, for a certain period of time after the divorce is final for rehabilitative purposes, or permanently. The goal of this series is to provide basic information about Arkansas’ laws on alimony. Given the potentially significant financial impact of alimony awards on both spouses, it is imperative to retain an experienced attorney to represent your interests. If you are in need of assistance, contact our office today to speak to a lawyer.
This series will review the following key topics:
- Understanding Arkansas’ alimony laws
- How underemployment may impact a spousal support award
- How a settlement agreement may affect alimony
- The importance of discovery in a spousal support case
- Seeking modification of an alimony determination
We feel it is important to address these issues for a variety of reasons. First, it is important to understand the types of factors that a Judge may consider when evaluating whether to award spousal support, how much alimony is appropriate, and the length of such obligations. Second, for obvious reasons, the employment status and income of both parties is a key consideration when reviewing alimony requests. A party who is intentionally “underemployed” for purposes of avoiding a spousal support obligation may still be required to make such payments as if they were making their customary wages. Third, divorcing couples often settle their cases outside of the courtroom. Before agreeing to settlement terms related to alimony, it is important to fully understand the obligations contained in a settlement agreement. Fourth, should a divorce case involving spousal support proceed to a trial, your attorney will have the ability to gather key evidence through the discovery process. Finally, unless the parties expressly agree that spousal support cannot be changed in the future, it may be possible to modify alimony awards under certain circumstances.
Our firm has experience handling divorce cases involving spousal support awards. If you need assistance, contact our office today to speak to a Little Rock lawyer. We also handle matters in Fayetteville, Fort Smith, Springdale, Jonesboro, North Little Rock, Conway, Rogers, Pine Bluff, and throughout the rest of Arkansas.