Family Law Prof Blog

Editor: Margaret Ryznar
Indiana University
Robert H. McKinney School of Law

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

New York Legislature Passes Alimony Laws

From The Wall Street Journal:

The New York state Senate passed sweeping revisions Wednesday to alimony laws that change how some payments are set and eliminate a long-debated requirement that judges calculate the lifetime value of a license or professional degree earned during the marriage, even if the spouse changed careers later.

The Assembly approved the bill last week.

The Senate’s action came five years after the state adopted legislation on alimony that eventually drew criticism from a wide range of bar associations and matrimonial lawyers.

That law introduced a formula to determine temporary alimony, known as maintenance, that is paid out between the filing of a divorce and its completion. It was intended to protect low-income New Yorkers, who may not able to afford lawyers, by providing predictability and consistency in awards.

It worked well for that group, many agreed. But it drew increasing opposition because it applied to people making more than $500,000 a year. Critics said it failed to account for the often more complicated financial situations of higher-income people, such as annual bonuses or mortgage payments. As a result, there were extreme cases of spouses being asked to pay more in child support, alimony and other expenses than their monthly incomes.

Read more here.

Maintenance (alimony) | Permalink


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