robyn137a_Frame100Robyn_MA_AlimonyContact Me_small
MA Alimony Frequently Asked Questions ( FAQ)

Thank you for taking the time to visit our website to learn more about MA Alimony. My team has compiled a list of FAQs in the areas of Massachusetts alimony that we hope will benefit our guests, prospects, and clients in understanding alimony in Massachusetts.

We encourage all of our website guests for their own protection to always consult with a licensed Massachusetts attorney in good standing practicing in the areas of Divorce and Family law, such as Boston alimony attorney Robyn A. Briatico, before acting on any information they obtain from this or any other website.

Important Note:
The general answers we provide in the areas of Family and Divorce Law are for educational purposes only and should not be taken as legal advice for any specific situation. The answers provided do not factor in the new alimony law titled An Act Reforming Alimony in the Commonwealth scheduled to take effect on March 1, 2012.

  • When does alimony or spousal support stop, end, or terminate in Massachusetts?
    Answer: In Massachusetts, the alimony award including the duration of alimony depends on how long you were married, the need for spousal support and the lifestyle that was enjoyed by the parties when the family was in tact. Back to Top
  • What is the formula to calculate or deterimine my alimony support award obligation in Massachusetts?
    Answer: Unlike child support, there is presently no specific formula or calculation used to determine the amount of the alimony award that you can expect to receive in Massachusetts. Back to Top
  • Where or how do I obtain the alimony or spousal support payment calculator or worksheet for massachusetts?
    Answer: There is presently no specific calculator or worksheet approved by the courts that will allow alimony recipients (husbands or wives) the ability to predict with certainty the alimony (or spousal support) award in Massachusetts. Back to Top
  • What amount of alimony will I be entitled to get or obtain if I have children and my spouse and I (husband and wife) have a combined income over $250,000 which exceeds the child support guidelines in Massachusetts?
    Answer: If your current family household income is over $250,000, the amount of alimony you'll receive will be at the trial judges discretion after considering all the mandatory factors under M.G.L c. 208, section 34. Back to Top
  • Is alimony or spousal support in Massachusetts permanent, rehabilitative, short or long term in duration?
    Answer: If alimony is awarded, the judge will use his or her discretion to come up with the alimony award duration after considering all factors under M.G.L c. 208, section 34. Presently the duration of the alimony award can be of any length and is at the discretion of the judge. Back to Top
  • Will the court award alimony to my spouse (ex-husband or wife) in short, mid or medium, or long term marriages in massachusetts?
    Answer: Whether alimony is awarded or not will be up to the trial judge and the specific facts of your case. The judge will consider all mandatory factors under M.G.L c. 208, section 34 in fashioning an alimony award if one is warranted. Back to Top
  • Is alimony awarded in Massachusetts if there are children of the marriage and the household income is less than the maximum child support guidelines of $250,000 per year?
    Answer: Judges have broad discretion when awarding alimony in cases where the family household income is under $250,000 per year. If there are children born of the marriage, the court will award child support to the custodial parent (husband or wife) but alimony may or may not be awarded depending on the specifics of your case. Back to Top
  • Can the court or judge make an award of child support and alimony for short, medium, or long term marriages if the family income in massachusetts is less than $250,000 per year?
    Answer: Yes. Massachusetts Trial judges in divorce cases have broad discretion in making an award of both child support and alimony even if your family household income is below the child support guideline of $250,000 per year. Back to Top
  • How long or what duration does a spouse (husband or wife) have to provide or pay alimony or spousal support in massachusetts?
    Answer: The duration of an alimony award may be specified in your separation agreement or by court order if your divorce goes to trial. The trial judge has broad discretion in setting the duration of an alimony award after having considered all mandatory factors under M.G.L c. 208, section 34. Back to Top
  • Does a ex-husband have to continue to pay alimony to his ex-wife (or former spouse) if he or she is living with a boyfriend or girlfriend in Massachusetts?
    Answer: Presently you must continue to pay alimony according to your separation agreement or court order even if you ex-wife (or ex-husband) cohabitates with their boyfriend or girlfriend. Back to Top
  • how much alimony or spousal support can the court award, make, or force me to pay in massachusetts?
    Answer: If the case goes to trial, the judge has broad discretion after considering all mandatory factors under M.G.L c. 208, section 34 in making alimony awards of any duration in short, medium, and long-term marriages. Back to Top
  • Can the court order both alimony and child support in Massachusetts?
    Answer: The judge has broad discretion in making a combine award of alimony and child support in divorce cases in Massachusetts. Back to Top
  • What actions can I take if my former spouse (ex-wife or ex-husband) is behind in alimony or spousal support payments in Massachusetts?
    Answer: If your ex-wife (or ex-husband) is not meeting their alimony payment obligations as spelled out in your separation agreement or court order, you can file a complaint for contempt. Back to Top
  • Will my alimony be reduced or eliminated during retirement in Massachusetts?
    Answer: It all depends on your separation agreement or divorce judgment as to whether or not alimony or spousal support would be extend into retirement. It is quite clear that retirement alone is not enough to get the court to terminate or end alimony. It is one of many important factors that can play a role (influence) a court's decision to continue, reduce, or eliminate alimony. Back to Top
  • Can I obtain,receive, or get alimony from my fiancee, boyfriend, or girlfriend in Massachusetts if I'm not married?
    Answer: You must have been married in order for the court to award alimony. Back to Top
  • Can a wife (or husband) in a second marriage obtain, recieve or get alimony in Massachusetts?
    Answer: A husband (or wife) in a second marriage who is seeking a divorce can pursue an alimony award in Massachusetts. Back to Top
  • If my husband (or wife) gets childs support, can I also get alimony in Massachusetts?
    Answer: The courts have considerable discretion in making an award of alimony even if your husband (or wife) has the kids and is getting child support from you. Back to Top
  • If my former wife (or ex-husband) works, do I still have to pay her (or him) alimony or spousal support in Massachusetts?
    Answer: It is well within the Judges discretion to make an award of alimony even if the alimony recipient (former husband or ex-wife) has a job or is working. Back to Top
  • Do alimony payments end with cohabitation or marriage in massachusetts?
    Answer: Alimony generally ends upon remarriage but not upon cohabitation with a boyfriend or girlfriend of a former spouse. Back to Top
  • If I cohabitate, will I lose my alimony in Massachusetts?
    Answer: Presently cohabitation is not a reason or justification for you to lose your alimony or spousal support. Back to Top
  • Once alimony has been awarded, can it be reduced in Massachusetts?
    Answer: While Judges have considerable discretion in reducing or even eliminating (or terminating) a prior alimony award, you must prove to the court that there is a substantial change in circumstances for alimony to be reduced or eliminated. Back to Top
  • What are the court rulings on alimony or spousal support in short term marriages in Massachusetts?
    Answer: Judges have considerable discretion in making alimony awards in short term marriages. While there are plenty of cases in which no alimony was awarded in short term marriages, there have been cases in which the court awarded rehabilitative alimony, short-term alimony, limited duration alimony, long term alimony, and even lifetime alimony. Back to Top
  • How are alimony payments or obligations determined or calculated in Massachusetts?
    Answer: Presently there is no mathematical formula, calculation, or worksheet approved by the legislature that judges can use to help determine or calculate a precise alimony award (if alimony is warranted) that is uniform and consistent from court to court and judge to judge. Judges must consider all mandatory factors in Massachusetts G.L.c 208, Section 34, in fashioning an alimony award. Back to Top
  • Does Massachusetts award alimony to a spouse (husband or wife) in a divorce?
    Answer: Depending on the specifics of your case, Judges have broad discretion in whether or not to make an alimony award to either the husband or the wife in short, medium, and long term marriages should your case go to trial. Back to Top
  • Where can I obtain a worksheet to calculate my alimony or spousal support payments and obligations in Massachusetts?
    Answer: There are no court or legislative approved mathematical formula or worksheet that you can use to determine your exact alimony award in Massachusetts. Back to Top