How long do I have to pay spousal Support in New York?

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A Variety of Factors Are Considered to Determine How Spousal Support is Paid in New York

If you’re facing a spousal support order, it is important to know the details of how this is calculated and how long you will have to make the monthly payments. The laws regarding spousal support and maintenance changed in 2015 and 2016, with new formulas for determining the amount and duration of spousal support, child support, and maintenance.

What is Spousal Support in New York?

Spousal support is not the same as maintenance, also sometimes called alimony in other states. Spousal support in New York is support paid to a current spouse when they are living separately, and it is most often ordered by Family Court. By contrast, maintenance is ordered in divorce court and follows different rules, although these orders can also be modified by the Family Court.

If you’re concerned about alimony rights, submit a contact form or give us a call at 866.926.5813.

Are there limits on how long you have to pay spousal support in New York?

No, there are not limits on how long you have to pay spousal support in New York. In fact, spousal support generally continues as long as both parties are alive and remain married to each other. 

You cannot stop a spousal support order completely, but spousal support orders can be changed by the New York Family Court when circumstances have dramatically changed. You can petition for a modification of the spousal support order in New York when there is a sudden or significant change in income or assets of either party.

If the spouses divorce later, the spousal support order would likely be modified to a maintenance order. How long a maintenance order remains in effect depends on how long the couple was married. 

  •       If the marriage lasted up to 15 years maintenance lasts 15% to 30% of the length of the marriage.
  •       If the marriage lasted 15 to 20 years, maintenance lasts 30% to 40% of the length of the marriage.
  •       If the marriage lasted over 20 years, maintenance is expected to last 35% to 50% of the length of the marriage.

Maintenance can also be ended when either spouse dies or the spouse receiving maintenance remarries.

How is spousal support calculated in New York?

A new law took effect in New York in 2015 that created a mathematical formula for determining support and maintenance amounts. The amount of spousal support ordered is based on each spouse’s income. Only the first $184,000 of the annual income of the spouse paying support will be considered. The formulas are complex, but you can get an estimate by visiting the NY courts online divorce calculator.

Should you consult an attorney about spousal support in New York?

While the amounts of spousal support are based largely on the duration of the marriage and the income of both spouses, family court judges do have some leeway on how much they can order you to pay. You should hire an attorney to represent you in these hearings so that you don’t get stuck with unreasonable spousal support payments. If you have any questions regarding spousal support in New York contact one of the attorneys at Brian D. Perskin & Associates today.

Learn About Our Brooklyn Attorneys:

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  2. Christin Grech
  3. Evan Seckular
  4. Gabrielle Hagege
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