Spousal Maintenance - Commonly Called Spousal Support

Some people think that spousal support is awarded to enable spouses to maintain the lifestyles they enjoyed while they were married. In reality, spousal maintenance awards in Texas have no bearing on lifestyle. When spousal maintenance is awarded to a spouse, it is to help ensure his or her minimum reasonable needs are met while they seek employment or education to enable that spouse to obtain employment.

In Texas, there are formulas that can be used to determine spousal support, and there are upper limits to award amounts. There are also factors set out in the Texas Family Code which are a guide for the trial court in determining whether the award of spousal maintenance is warranted.Our attorneys are available to educate our clients about the support payments they can expect to pay or receive.

Although spousal maintenance is based on a formula, judges have complete discretion in determining whether to award it. Factors the judge may consider include:

  • Whether a spouse is a homemaker
  • Whether a spouse was involved in breaking up the marriage
  • The needs of each spouse
  • How much property each spouse is receiving
  • What the spouses have done to make themselves marketable, such as education

One of our co-founding attorneys, Carol Prater, is a board certified family lawyer in the state of Texas and practices exclusively in the area of family law. Her experience and specialization in family law help her look at situations objectively and understand how judges may rule. It may be financially advantageous to agree to the payment of contractual alimony.Mrs. Prater, with the assistance of the client's certified public accountant, can advise her clients whether the voluntary payment of contractual alimony or an agreement to pay maintenance would be advantageous to the client considering the federal tax laws.

To learn more about the counsel we offer, schedule an initial consultation with one of our Temple attorneys. We can be reached through an online contact form or by calling 254-773-9081.