When a couple divorces, it is not uncommon for one party of the marriage to be awarded spousal maintenance, also known as alimony. Spousal maintenance may be a part of a divorce settlement when one spouse needs help transitioning after a divorce or does not have the income or resources to support themselves without their spouse.
How long an alimony award might last is dependent upon a number of factors, and most spousal maintenance awards are not permanent. In all cases, however, one thing that will certainly terminate a spousal maintenance award is remarriage.
Spousal Maintenance and Getting Remarried
If you are a maintenance-receiving spouse in Illinois and are thinking about getting remarried, it is important that you understand that if you do say “I do,” your maintenance payments will end, even if you have been awarded a long-standing maintenance order.
It is also worth noting that it is not just remarriage that may be the catalyst for a support order being terminated; cohabitation can also be grounds for the termination of a spousal support award. In fact, the duty of the maintenance-paying spouse to continue to pay maintenance ends upon the date of cohabitation, and cohabitation or remarriage while receiving a spousal maintenance award may mean having to reimburse the other spouse for payments.
Protecting Your Right to Alimony (Maintenance)
At the time of your divorce and maintenance settlement, it is very important that you understand what things may result in a termination of your maintenance award, and how to mitigate such situations. If you are thinking about cohabitation or remarriage, know that doing either will likely be grounds for a termination of maintenance. If you want to continue your maintenance payments, it is best to consult with an attorney who can guide you through the law and what your options are.
In many cases, alimony (maintenance) has a set date of expiration. Waiting until the date of expiration of a maintenance award before cohabiting or remarrying may be the best way to maximize your award.
Learn More About Spousal Support in Illinois
Spousal support can be an important part of a divorce judgment, providing a spouse with the support that they need to readjust and transition to a new life. At the law offices of Fay, Farrow & Associates, P.C., we understand that alimony (maintenance) may be very critical in your divorce. We also know that you may have many questions about what warrants an alimony (maintenance) award, when an award will be granted, and when an award may end. In addition to referring to 750 ILCS 5/504 – Maintenance, you can also call our law offices today for answers to your tough questions. We serve clients throughout Illinois, including those living in Downers Grove, Lombard, Lisle, Naperville, Wheaton, and more.