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What Factors Determine Alimony in Georgia?

Georgia, like many other states, allows for alimony payments in the event of a divorce. Alimony is typically awarded based on the financial needs of either spouse. The factors that go into this determination are codified in O.C.G.A 19-6-5, which states:

  • The finder of fact may grant permanent alimony to either party, either from the corpus of the estate or otherwise. The following shall be considered in determining the amount of alimony; if any, to be awarded:
  1. The standard of living established during the marriage
  2. The duration of the marriage
  3. The age and physical and emotional condition of both parties
  4. The financial resources of each party
  5. Where applicable, the time necessary for either party to acquire sufficient education or training to enable him to find appropriate employment
  6. The contribution of each party to the marriage, including but not limited to, services rendered in homemaking, child care, education, and career building of the other party
  7. The condition of the parties, including the separate estate, earning capacity, and fixed liabilities of the parties, and
  8. Such other relevant factors as the court deems equitable and proper

Georgia has temporary and permanent alimony. Temporary alimony is a useful tool for the court during the divorce process because it assists with providing financial security to the dependent spouse. Permanent alimony is typically awarded at the time of the final decree after the court has had an opportunity to review the resources, both current and future, of both parties. When the court orders alimony to the lesser earning spouse it may come in the form of payments or a lump sum.

How Long Will The Alimony Payments Continue?

  • Remarriage
    • The last section of O.C.G.A 19-6-5 has a provision in it that specifically addresses the potential remarriage of one spouse.
      • For instance, section (b) states: All obligations for permanent alimony, however created, the time for performance of which has not arrived, shall terminate upon remarriage of the party to whom the obligations are owed unless otherwise provided.
  • Change In Circumstances
    • If the circumstances of either spouse has changed, a motion may be filed requesting the court to either terminate or modify the alimony payments.

Securing an adequate alimony from the higher earning spouse or modifying an existing order are complicated matters that require the advice of an experienced attorney. Douglasville Divorce and Family Law Attorneys provides free legal consultations on all family and divorce related matters. If you have any questions regarding a legal matter contact our firm today.