What is the Basis for an Award of Alimony?

Family Law Attorney Serving Reno, Sparks, and Nearby Western Nevada

A stack of money with a wedding ring on top

In the state of Nevada, there are eleven factors that the court will take into consideration when determining both if and for what length of time alimony will need to be paid. These are:

  • The length of the marriage
  • The standard of living during the marriage
  • The value of property held by each spouse
  • Contributions of each spouse to any property held individually or jointly
  • The award of property granted by the court in the divorce
  • The financial conditions of each spouse
  • The contributions of either spouse as homemaker
  • The pre-marital career of the spouse who would receive alimony
  • The income, earning capacity, age, and health of each spouse
  • The physical and mental condition of each spouse as it relates to his or her ability to work
  • Any specialized education or training that increased the level of marketable skills for either spouse during the course of the marriage

In addition to these primary factors for the establishment of alimony, there are several sub-factors that will be considered by the court during divorce proceedings to decide if spousal support should be awarded.

In Nevada, both husbands and wives can request alimony. In some cases, temporary support will be ordered while the divorce is pending.

Different Types of Alimony

Many states have essentially eliminated spousal support, but Nevada is not among them. In fact, it is common for alimony to be included in the final divorce decree in our state, though it is never guaranteed.

Depending on the circumstances of the divorce, the court may order one of four types of alimony:

  • Temporary Maintenance. This type of alimony is paid while the divorce is pending. Its continuation may not be included in the final decree
  • Temporary Alimony. Different than temporary maintenance, temporary alimony will be included in the divorce decree but set to expire at a certain date or once specific requirements have been met
  • Rehabilitative Alimony. If training or education for job skills will be required for a spouse, rehabilitative alimony may be ordered. This type of temporary alimony will no longer need to be paid once benchmarks for completion or job acquisition have been met
  •  Permanent Alimony. This type of alimony will be paid until the death of either spouse or the remarriage of the recipient

The court does not consider fault when establishing alimony. The basis for spousal support is almost entirely financial.

Modifying Alimony

As lives change, alimony can be modified. If there are significant changes in the lifestyle of the recipient or of the income of either spouse, modification or termination of alimony can be requested. The same factors for determining the initial award of alimony will be considered by the court in these hearings.

It is always a good idea to discuss your options with an experienced attorney before making any attempt to modify or terminate alimony. The issue is complex and actions can result in unexpected outcomes when all factors are not taken into consideration.

If you are in need of an alimony lawyer in Nevada, please call Thomas C. Bradley at 775-323-5178 to schedule a consultation. Mr. Bradley serves clients living in Reno, Sparks, and surrounding Western Nevada communities.