Spousal Maintenance, or what most people know as alimony, is money paid by one spouse to another if one of the spouses lacks sufficient property to provide for that spouse’s reasonable needs or cannot be self-sufficient through employment. A.R.S. § 25-319. In order to qualify for spousal maintenance, a Judge will look at the “25-319” factors and then determine the amount and time period to qualify. One question I get is, “How long does spousal maintenance last?” This really depends on a person’s circumstances. It can last from one year to seven or more, it really depends on a person’s circumstances. If you come into the office I can discuss your options.
One other question I get is, “How much will I receive?” This also depends on the circumstances. But one thing a Judge is unlikely to consider is your “current lifestyle.” A Judge is under no obligation to maintain your current standard of living. Arizona law focuses on “reasonable needs” and “self-sufficiency” not lifestyle. So if you are used to living in a 5,000 sq. ft. home, a Judge is unlikely to require your x-spouse to provide you with a 5,000 sq. ft. home if your reasonable needs can be met in a 1,500 sq. ft. home.