One of the first questions that clients always ask is: How long will I pay support to my soon to be ex-spouse?
Unfortunately, as with most areas of the law, there is not a strict timeline for the payment of support. The determination varies based upon numerous factors unique to each matter. A court will review all of the factors to determine the appropriate duration for payment of support. Where there is a short-term marriage with no children, support can theoretically be paid for just a few months. In contrast, where there is a long-term marriage where one spouse was never employed, support can be paid for up to 50% of the length of the marriage. In certain unique circumstances, support can be paid for the lifetime of the spouse.
Notwithstanding this fact-based review, an advisory schedule was created so as to guide parties in making the determination as to length of support that he/she might expect to pay in a divorce. This schedule is utilized in court as a guide for determination of support.
That schedule is as follows:
|Length of the marriage||Percent of the length of the marriage for which maintenance will be payable|
|0 up to and including |
|More than 15 up to and including 20 years||30%-40%|
|More than 20 years||35%-50%|