It was not that long ago that, when a couple divorced, the wife would go on to raise the children and receive alimony while the husband would be handed a visitation schedule along with a court order to pay both child support and alimony. That is no longer the way things work. Times have changed.
As more and more women joined the workforce and as parenting roles became less stereotypically gender-specific, men were no longer routinely taxed with spousal support after a divorce in Oklahoma. It is even possible for men to receive alimony in certain circumstances, although it is much less common than for women.
Whether you might pay or receive alimony, you need to understand the basics to avoid paying more than what is appropriate under Oklahoma alimony laws. If you are facing questions about alimony, get the answers you need from an experienced Tulsa alimony attorney for men.
Fighting Alimony in Oklahoma
When a man is involved in a divorce where he is the higher-earning spouse, there is a good chance that he might need to pay alimony. Judges have broad discretion to set the amount and duration of spousal support and to determine whether any alimony at all must be paid.
Oklahoma allows alimony for a particular purpose. Seldom is a spouse ordered to support an ex-spouse indefinitely. Instead, spousal support is intended to help a formerly dependent spouse get established outside the financial harbor of a marriage.
A Tulsa divorce attorney for men works to be certain a divorcing spouse’s demands for rehabilitative income are no more than what is reasonable.
Going from one household and two paychecks (in many cases) to two households and two separate paychecks likely means that you will take a significant financial hit. There are, however, mechanisms that can be fairly used to fight paying alimony entirely or to reduce alimony payments:
• A valid prenuptial agreement or postnuptial agreement will eliminate the need to pay alimony or reduce the payment amount.
• During divorce negotiations, offering a soon-to-be ex a larger portion of the marital assets may eliminate the need to pay alimony. By including something that she values – the marital home, for example – she may be more willing to get re-established financially without alimony payments.
• Offer a lump-sum buyout as an alternative to future alimony payments.
Whatever approach you take to fighting alimony payments, it’s important to pay careful consideration to the tax implications and to keep your dealings fair and equitable. Further, if you can prove your spouse was adulterous during your marriage, that she is currently living with another partner, that she is underemployed, or that she doesn’t need alimony for some other reason, it could provide you with an advantage in your fight against alimony. If you are fighting alimony in Oklahoma, you need a Tulsa divorce attorney for men on your side.
A man who has experienced a substantial and continuing change in his financial ability to pay alimony at the court-ordered rate, can request a Modification of Alimony. He can also file such a modification if his ex has experienced a substantial decrease in her need for alimony – if, for example, she is now living with a new partner. If the terms of the original alimony decree are found to be unreasonable to either party, the court may award you a modification.
In Oklahoma, alimony obligations continue upon the death or remarriage of the spouse who receives the alimony, or until the court’s spousal support order expires . Further, if a spouse is in a domestic relationship with an intimate partner – if she moves in with a lover — that may also be grounds for terminating alimony.
Sometimes, Oklahoma courts place stipulations on alimony. If, for example, a supported ex-spouse was required to obtain further education or job training but fails to do so, the court may reduce or terminate alimony. The length of a marriage is usually the single most influential factor the court uses to calculate how long you’ll be required to pay alimony. When that amount of time has elapsed, a man will no longer be obligated to pay alimony to his ex-wife.
Finally, if a man suffers a significant financial setback, such as the loss of a job, or his ex-wife experiences significant financial progress, the court – again – may reduce or end the alimony obligation.
Alimony for Men
If the court deems it reasonable, either spouse can receive alimony after an Oklahoma divorce. If a wife earns significantly more than the husband, the court may well award him alimony upon divorce.
It is important to understand that alimony is not a legal right but is, instead, a legal remedy for what the court considers a financial disparity between two divorcing parties. While men are far less likely to be awarded alimony in Oklahoma, it can happen.
Consult an Alimony Attorney Today
Alimony is a complicated matter that can have significant ramifications for your financial future. The financial impact of divorce is burdensome enough; the added burden of alimony makes things that much tighter.
A skilled Tulsa alimony attorney for men will help ensure that you are not overpaying alimony if you are the payor and that you are receiving sufficient alimony if you are the payee. The legal team at our Tulsa office is here to help. Call for a consultation now at (918) 986-7724.