A divorce doesn’t just mean an end to a marriage. It can also mean an end to financial security. You may rely on your spouse to pay certain bills to maintain your lifestyle. There’s no reason that you should suffer because you wish to pursue a divorce. Instead you may want to seek out spousal maintenance or alimony.
Temporary alimony is a court order for one spouse to pay another a certain amount for a period of time. The alimony payments maintain the family’s lifestyle while the divorce arrangements are made. If you or your spouse are seeking temporary alimony, it’s crucial you obtain quality legal representation.
Attorney for Temporary Alimony in Seattle, Washington
Most couples face hard financial situations in divorce. You could lose your economic security just because you ended a relationship. Don’t move any further without legal counsel. You may qualify for temporary alimony during divorce proceedings.
Contact the attorneys at Law Offices of Shana E. Thompson today. We are skilled at representing clients seeking temporary or permanent alimony. Our attorneys will do whatever we can to help you maintain financial security. Call us now at (206) 712-2756 to schedule your first consultation.
Law Offices of Shana E. Thompson accepts clients throughout the greater King County area including Seattle, Bellevue, Kent and Redmond. We also represent clients in other counties such as Everett in Snohomish County.
Overview of Temporary Alimony in Washington
- What is the Purpose of Spousal Maintenance?
- Factors for Alimony in Washington
- How Washington Enforces Alimony
- When Does My Temporary Alimony End?
- Additional Resources
What is the Purpose of Spousal Maintenance?
Couples with large income gaps may have issues after divorce. One spouse may be unable to maintain their lifestyle without the other. In some cases, one spouse may need payments to gain the skills they need to reenter the workplace. Spousal maintenance ensures that both parties are self-sufficient during divorce proceedings.
The purpose and function of alimony are to:
- Provide a positive economic well-being for both spouses after and during divorce proceedings;
- Provide the opportunity for a spouse to gain the skills, education and experience needed to enter a field and become financially independent; or
- Provide a flexible means of asset transfer or property allocation during and after divorce.
Factors for Alimony in Seattle, Washington
Alimony isn’t given in all divorce cases. A person is given alimony if there is a large economic disparity between both spouses or they need some compensation to help them get back on their feet again. Washington courts use the factors listed in the Revised Washington Code (RCW) § 26.09.090 to determine if a person needs alimony or not.
- The financial status of both spouses;
- The community property shared by both spouses;
- The separate property belonging to each spouse;
- If child support was issued to either spouse;
- The time needed for one spouse to gain sufficient skills, education or training necessary to gain employment;
- The standard of living between the couple during the marriage;
- The length of the marriage;
- The age, financial obligations, and physical and emotional condition of the spouse seeking maintenance; and
- The ability of the spouse who is paying alimony to maintain both their lifestyle and meet payments.
Enforcing Alimony in King County Washington
Failure to pay alimony can result in serious consequences. RCW § 26.09.138(2) states your spouse could be penalized if they are 15 days past due a payment more than $100. If this happens you can seek a mandatory retirement benefits assignment order without notifying your spouse.
Another avenue you can take is to file for contempt of court. The term “contempt of court” means a person has intentionally disobeyed a court order. It’s an incredibly serious order and can result in legal ramifications. If the court finds your spouse guilty, they may impose one or more of the following remedial sanctions:
- Imprisonment for a short period of time;
- Forfeiture of up to $2,000 for each day the contempt of court continues; or
- A court order designed to ensure compliance.
When Does My Temporary Spousal Support End?
Temporary spousal maintenance has an expiration date. Once the divorce is finalized the maintenance payments stop. This is because temporary spousal support is only to maintain a family’s lifestyle while legal proceedings are being sorted out. If you need payments for a longer period of time, you may want to look into permanent spousal support.
You may be able to maintain your alimony checks after your divorce. In Washington, there are several reasons why you may be granted a longer lasting alimony. It’s rare for any person to be rewarded alimony for life. However, you can get spousal maintenance for a long period of time.
Listed below are several reasons a court may grant long-term alimony in Washington.
- Disability Maintenance – If you have a disability and need additional assistance in everyday life.
- Rehabilitative Maintenance – The payments are to ensure that you gain the skills, education or training needed to gain employment and be financially independent.
- Compensatory Maintenance – If you paid a significant amount of money for your spouse to gain the skills, education or training needed for their employment.
Washington Alimony Forms – Visit the official website for the Washington Courts to find more information about spousal maintenance forms. Access the site to learn which forms are necessary for a temporary order and a notice of hearing for alimony.
Washington Alimony Laws – Visit the official website for Washington State Legislature to find more information about spousal maintenance. Access the site to learn more about spousal maintenance, the factors that play into it and other statutes relating to divorce.
Lawyer for Temporary Alimony in King County, WA
Are you filing for divorce? Has your financial life been in upheaval since your divorce has started? You may be qualified for temporary spousal maintenance depending on your circumstances. Don’t wait another moment uncertain about your economic future. Contact the attorneys at Law Offices of Shana E. Thompson today.
Law Offices of Shana E. Thompson has represented numerous clients seeking alimony for years. We understand that handling legal issues and ending a relationship is difficult. This is why we want to be your partner in this legal process. Contact us now at (206) 712-2756 for your first consultation.
We accept clients throughout the greater Seattle area and surrounding communities including Bellevue, Renton and Burien.
This article was last updated on December 18, 2018.