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Who pays alimony in Connecticut?

In Connecticut, either spouse may be ordered to pay alimony depending on his or her circumstances. Alimony is granted on a case-by-case basis. It is not guaranteed in any divorce.

There are three types of alimony that may be ordered. "Temporary" alimony may be ordered before the actual divorce decree. This award is usually ordered to sustain one spouse's livelihood during the separation period.

"Short-term" alimony is often ordered when one spouse is not employed and considered unemployable due to a lack of education, experience and skills. Short-term alimony is meant to sustain their livelihood while they acquire the qualifications they need to become employed.

"Long-term or permanent" alimony may be ordered in long-term marriages, or when one party's income far exceeds the other's income. In many long-lasting marriages, one party has helped the other achieve the success he or she now has. In fairness, the courts award permanent alimony to them so they do not lose what they have gained throughout their years of marriage.

Connecticut courts use their discretion when granting alimony. They consider several different things. One factor mentioned earlier is the duration of the marriage. Did both parties work together to achieve the lifestyle they now have? They also consider their assets and any other sources of income the couple has.

The age and health of each party is also important when considering their needs. The court may look at who, if anyone, is at fault in the breakup of the marriage. They also look at the occupation and employability of each party.

If minor children are involved, and one parent is awarded custody, the court considers the parent's desire to secure employment. Do they need help to become employable? Will they be a stay-at-home parent?

While the court decides whether or not to order alimony at the time of a divorce, modifications to an order can be made at any time. If you have been ordered to pay alimony, and your circumstances have changed so that you are now having difficulty meeting your financial obligations, you can have your attorney file a motion to modify the original agreement.

Source:, "Connecticut Alimony," accessed Dec. 07, 2017

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