Are you considering divorce but worried about your financial future? Many people assume that alimony in Texas only applies to those who have children, but this is not necessarily the case. Various factors can impact whether or not you may be eligible for alimony payments.
After a divorce, most people wonder whether they can ask for alimony if they don’t have children. Our compassionate family law attorneys at Bolton Law Firm, P.C. can help you preserve your legal rights during divorce.
Read on to learn more about how spousal support works and your rights as a divorcing spouse without kids.
Overview of Alimony in Texas
Alimony is payments made from one spouse to another after they divorce. Alimony provides financial assistance to the less-monied spouse to maintain a similar standard of living to what they enjoyed during the marriage. The breadwinner spouse usually pays alimony to the homemaker spouse.
You can ask for alimony even if you don’t have any children. There are several instances where spousal support may be appropriate, even when no minor children are involved.
If you’re considering asking for alimony, it’s essential to speak with a family law attorney to explore your rights and options.
Who Qualifies for Alimony in Texas?
To qualify for alimony, you must be divorced or legally separated from your spouse. You must also demonstrate a financial need for alimony, and your spouse must be able to pay it.
Courts will consider factors such as the length of your marriage, each spouse’s earning capacity, contribution to the marriage, and custody of any children when deciding alimony.
Can I Ask for Alimony Without Having Children?
If you’re seeking alimony from your spouse, you may wonder if you must have children to be eligible. The answer is no—you do not need to have children to receive alimony.
The court will likely consider the length of your marriage when determining whether or not to award alimony. If you’ve been married for a relatively short period, you may have difficulty convincing the court that you deserve alimony.
Even if you don’t have kids, the court may still consider your ability to earn an income when deciding about alimony. If you can make a good income and support yourself without assistance from your spouse, it’s less likely that the court will award you alimony.
Remember that even if you meet all of the criteria for being awarded alimony, there’s no guarantee you’ll receive it. Alimony is ultimately up to the court’s discretion, so even if you think you deserve it, there’s no guarantee that the court will agree.
Varied Duration and Amount of Alimony Payments
Although it is less common, courts may still order alimony in cases where the couple does not have children. The duration and amount of these payments will vary based on factors such as the length of the marriage and each spouse’s earning capacity.
Shorter marriages often result in shorter terms of alimony, while longer marriages will require payments for a more extended time. The court will also consider each spouse’s ability to earn an income and support themselves.
For instance, if one spouse was a stay-at-home parent during the marriage and has not worked outside the home for many years, that spouse may be entitled to alimony for a more extended period than someone who has always been employed. The same is true if one spouse has a much higher income than the other.
If you are seeking alimony but do not have children with your ex-spouse, it is essential to consult a seasoned family law attorney to learn more about your rights and options.
Factors in Determining Alimony Payments
Many factors will affect whether or not you are awarded alimony if you do not have children, including the following:
- The financial needs and resources of each party
- The duration of the marriage
- The standard of living during the marriage
- The age, physical, and emotional health of each party
- The earning capacity of each party
- The contribution of each party to the education, training, or earning power of the other party
- The relative education levels of each party
- The employment history of each party
- The contribution of each party to marital property
Alternatives to Seeking Alimony
Although seeking alimony may be the first option when you think about getting financial support from your ex, there are a few alternatives that you can explore. For example, you can reach an agreement with your ex outside of court through mediation or negotiation. Alternatively, you could file for child support if you have joint custody of children.
If you and your ex are on relatively good terms, reaching an agreement about financial support shouldn’t be too difficult. However, going through the courts may be your best option if you’re not on speaking terms or if your relationship is strained.
Remember that even if you don’t have children, the court may still order your ex to pay spousal support if there is a significant income disparity.
Contact a Family Law Attorney Today
Asking for alimony if you don’t have children can be a difficult decision, but it is crucial to understand your legal rights and the available options that you may have. Both parties must be aware of their obligations and responsibilities when seeking alimony so that any decisions made agree with each other.
If you are considering asking for alimony, consult a seasoned Texas family law attorney who can advise you on your specific situation and what options may be available. Please schedule a consultation to get more information about alimony in Texas by calling 281-519-6087 or using our online contact form.