Spousal Support / Alimony Lawyers – Chicago, IL
Serving Cook, Will, DuPage & Lake Counties
We explain on our website how the state uses a formula to calculate child support. But determining spousal maintenance, sometimes referred to as alimony, is less mechanical and relies more on the demonstrative “needs” of a lesser earning spouse. Further, the subjective opinions and discretion of a family court judge cannot be overlooked.
Therefore, a persuasive and experienced lawyer can prove especially valuable in a spousal maintenance case.
Negotiating a Successful Spousal Maintenance Agreement
There are different durations for maintenance awards. Some last forever and some last only a short time. Here are the three most common forms of maintenance:
Permanent maintenance: To be paid until the death of the spouse.
Maintenance in gross: A lump sum payment or series of payments.
Rehabilitative maintenance: May be for six months to five years, or for an unspecified period of time. The idea is to provide the spouse with funding until he or she is self-sufficient.
Aggressive Illinois Spousal Support Attorneys
At The Walters Law Group, Ltd., we work cases involving all three kinds. Each kind has its own set of financial and tax issues.
A couple can often either include spousal maintenance in the final divorce agreement, or exclude it. There is an upside to paying maintenance. Alimony (maintenance) must be treated as taxable income for the receiver, but it is tax deductible for the payor. Some couples opt to set spousal maintenance aside, and look to a property division settlement as an alternative.
Always, at The Walters Law Group, our attorneys are ready to advise you on your best options.
High Income Support Attorneys
What is high income support?
Basically the payor of support is a high income earner whom will argue that the application of the statutory guidelines would result in support payment amounts that would far exceed the amount that would normally be paid out based on the statutory guidelines.
The argument is that the statutory percentage child support amount provides a financial “windfall” to the residential parent.
Illinois does not provide a statutory solution to the high earner case or situation.
So parties, and judges, will consider the following:
- The actual needs of the child. The residential parent will have to produce evidence, e.g. bills, invoices, receipts, etc., proving the cost of caring for the child.
- The residential parent may argue the “standard of living” which the child would have enjoyed if the parties had remained married. Evidence is key to establish the standard of living.
- Who is a “high wage earner?” The Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act provides little help. Is a person a “high wage earner” if he or she earns $200,000.00, $250,000.00, $300,000.00, $350,000.00, $400,000, $500,000, $500,000+ etc…?? What is the threshold under which a judge will impose the statutory guidelines or over which a judge will consider deviation from the guidelines? The answer is each judge has his or her own opinion as to where the threshold rests. Due to these variances, an experienced / local divorce and family law lawyer can provide guidance as to what a particular judge’s position may be.
Tough & Aggressive Family Law & Divorce Attorneys.
We have over twenty years of combined experience in handling divorce, custody and family law cases. YOU give us your confidence, WE give you the peace of mind and the results you deserve.
We help people and families in Chicago and throughout the Chicagoland suburbs.
To meet with us, call The Walters Law Group, Ltd.’s attorneys at 312-806-6700 / 708-361-9700, or e-mail us using this online form.