Hollywood Marriages vs. Long Term Marriage and the Effect on Spousal Maintenance

Cindy Best

In a time when most Hollywood couples are getting married and divorced within the same year, and most everyday couples find it difficult to stay together as well, the term “long-term” marriage is becoming more and more obsolete.? The length or term of a couple’s marriage is one of several factors a Judge will look at when making a decision on whether to award spousal maintenance (also referred to as alimony or spousal support), in what amount and for what length of time.

The length of a couple’s marriage is very important in the determination of a potential spousal maintenance award.? It is taken into consideration twice: first when a Judge is determining whether a party is entitled to an award of spousal maintenance; and?second to determine the amount and duration of the award.? Several other factors are taken into account along with the length of the marriage including a party’s ability to become self-supporting, or their ability to be self-sufficient; the party’s age; the standard of living established during the marriage; and the comparative financial resources of the parties (see A.R.S. ?25-319 for a complete list of factors a Court may consider in granting or denying a request for spousal maintenance).

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