Spousal Maintenance

Do you need spousal maintenance? Have you been asked to pay spousal maintenance? We provide expert advice on your entitlements, rights and obligations. 

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What is Spousal Maintenance?

Spousal maintenance is paid when a marriage or de facto relationships ends and where one person is in need of financial support because they have the care of children or they are ill or are not able to obtain work. The ex-spouse must be able to afford to pay spousal maintenance. 

If you have been financially dependant on the main bread-winner and are unable to work because you are raising children or need to get a job, you may be entitled to spousal maintenance. 

My ex says that I should get a job?

It is not unusual when a divorce or separation happens that you may be told by your ex to get a job.

If you are raising children or have always been involved in the home duties or you have not been in the work force for many years, then getting a job is not easy or practical.

It may be that you ex- spouse can provide spousal maintance for a period of time.

My partner has left and I have no income to support myself what can I do?

You can make an urgent application for spousal maintenance, where you have an immediate need of financial assistance and cannot support yourself adequately.

The Court will consider your application and consider the financial capacity of your ex- partner, it will consider why you can’t financially support yourself and where the matter is urgent may make an instant decision and spousal maintenance will usually be made for a short-term only.

How much spousal maintenance am I entitled too?

This will depend upon your financial needs and the financial capacity of your partner to pay. The payment can be negotiated and agreed upon or an order can be made by the Court, if appropriate.

General Information – Spousal Maintenance

It is not uncommon, when a relationship ends for one person to need financial support from their ex-partner, especially where children are involved and they are caring for them, this type of financial support is known as spousal maintenance.

You may need to be supported financially for a short term so you can find work or complete your studies or you need support whilst you are raising children and you are unable to financially support yourself.

In circumstances where an ex-spouse or partner has the ability because of their income or financial resources to financially support their ex -spouse or de facto partner, then spousal maintenance can be negotiated or Court ordered.

A spousal maintenance application can be made at the same time as you make a property application at the Family Court or Federal Circuit Court of Australia.

We are always happy to hear from you. If you have an inquiry or need to consult with one of our specialist, family lawyers please contact us on 02 8999 1800.

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