In Australia, both partners are very well protected by law in the event of a separation or divorce. If one partner doesn’t or is unable to work or has a significantly lower income, the court may rule that the other partner is responsible for paying spousal maintenance.
In general, this is designed to provide support for the person with the lower income. Spousal maintenance may be paid in a lump sum or at regular, pre-defined intervals, as required by the courts.
However, as family lawyers will tell you, spousal maintenance can be something that’s a little complicated and hard to understand. Because of this, we’ve put together the following list of the five most important things you have to know about spousal maintenance.
- The Court Will Consider Numerous Things
When making spousal maintenance adjudications, the courts will take a range of things into account. Most importantly is the income of the two people in question, along with their qualifications and ability to work. Other considerations include:
- Children and whether either party is responsible for any dependents.
- Any savings, superannuation or other assets either party has.
- The health and age of both parties.
- Child support and child support payments.
In addition, anything else considered relevant may be used by the courts when they make their decision.