When you and your spouse decide to end your marriage, one of you may be responsible for paying the other one alimony. Alimony is a payment one spouse makes to the other when they end their marriage.
South Carolina family judges have the final say on who has to pay alimony and how much of it. They may order different kinds of alimony:
- Temporary or maintenance alimony, which is paid while you are separated and in the process of divorcing.
- Permanent alimony, which is paid after the divorce is finalized.
A judge can order only one or both of these. There are then six types of alimony the judge may order permanently.
1. Periodic Alimony
This type of support is paid until the person receiving the support remarries or begins living with someone else. It can also end when one of you dies.
2. Lump-Sum Alimony
This type of alimony is paid in a single installment or a couple of installments over a certain period. It occurs when the court sees a short-term reason for alimony but doesn’t believe it’s necessary for the long term. A judge may choose this type of alimony if one spouse has already moved out of state, for instance.
3. Rehabilitative Alimony
This type of alimony is usually paid for a finite period when one person requires support, such as when a spouse is attending school or doing job training. It ends when the court deems the period over, and it’s usually a short time. Judges often award this type of compensation when a marriage didn’t last very long.
4. Reimbursement Alimony
This type of alimony is paid when the court sees a reason that one party should pay the other party based on something that happened during the marriage. For example, the court may order it if one spouse supported the other while they were going to school.
5. Separate Maintenance and Support
This type of alimony is paid during the time leading up to the divorce and ends when you are no longer living together or the divorce goes through.
6. Other Alimony
In other cases, there may be unusual circumstances or unexpected events that lead to the need for alimony. The judge has the discretion to make an award based on these things, and they can modify or terminate the alimony as well. For instance, if one spouse gets sick or is out of work for some reason, then there may be a need for the judge to reexamine the case.
Get the Legal Support You Need
Alimony can be a confusing area because there are so many variables that play into a judge’s decision and so many ways they can decide to award payments. If you need assistance with securing alimony or you have questions about a proposed alimony agreement, it’s best to consult with a lawyer.
Lauren Taylor Law can help you in your case. We look out for our clients and explain the complexities of the law in language they can understand. Schedule a free consultation with us today.
South Carolina divorce attorney Lauren Taylor practices family law in Charleston and Greenville. She graduated from the Charlotte School of Law, and has been practicing for more than ten years.
Since the firm’s inception in 2012, Mrs. Taylor has helped hundreds of people navigate the uncertainties surrounding the family and criminal court process.
She has cultivated a team that ensures each case has a strategy crafted specifically to the clients needs and desires.
Her commitment to top notch service has led her to open two additional offices in the low country where she now resides with her husband Michael and her golden retriever, Buster.