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Alimony still helping many in Massachusetts's divorces

Alimony reform has been a big topic of discussion in Massachusetts and in many other states. With reform on the rise, many individuals may worry that alimony is no longer a viable option for them. Although the laws have changed, alimony still serves as a useful tool and helps many individuals.

The argument for reform is that alimony is a concept more aligned with olden times. In the past, when a marriage dissolved because of wrongdoing, alimony allowed the dissatisfied party compensation. Since wrongdoing now plays a lesser role in divorce, many argue that alimony should as well. These individuals believe that alimony is abused and change is necessary.

Although some abuse may be present in today's system, many individuals seek alimony because they suffer financially when their divorce is finalized. An alimony award allows the court to offset the disparities in income that result between a non-wage earning or lower-wage earning spouse and a higher earning spouse.

Massachusetts's courts consider many factors when determining if and how much spousal support should be awarded. Several of these factors include the couple's standard of living during the marriage, the marriage length, the physical condition of each spouse along with their financial condition and each spouse's ability to support him or herself independently.

Before any Massachusetts resident rules out the possibility of alimony, they should discuss their situation with an experienced legal professional. These professionals have current knowledge of specific state laws and can work with individuals in order to best protect their rights.

Source:, "Alimony still serves important purpose," Ronald G. Lieberman, Jan. 16, 2014

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