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Do You Have to be Divorced to Receive Alimony?

White square with a gold border and the black words “Do you have to be divorced to receive alimony?” with the Freed Marcroft family law firm logo in the lower right corner.Many people wonder whether it is possible to receive alimony while a divorce is pending.  It is.

There are three types of alimony timeframes in Connecticut:

Temporary alimony, often called “pendente lite” alimony, is alimony that a court orders while a divorce is pending.

Read on to learn more.

Temporary Alimony Criteria

When deciding whether to award alimony pendente lite, Connecticut courts use the same factors as they do when awarding alimony in the final divorce order.  They only exception is that courts do not consider the grounds for the divorce.

Read: What Factors Are Considered When Determining Alimony in a Connecticut Divorce?

When Does Pendente Lite Alimony End?

The purpose of pendente lite alimony is to provide financial support to a spouse that needs it during the divorce.  Therefore, temporary alimony ends as soon as a divorce is final.  At the end of the divorce, the court makes the ultimate determination of whether that spouse will receive alimony post-divorce.

Pendente lite alimony orders may inform the court’s ultimate alimony award (or the spouses’ ultimate agreement), or things could you in an entirely different direction.

When Do People Seek Temporary Alimony?

Often spouses continue to handle their finances during divorce as they did pre-divorce, and there is no need for temporary alimony.  But there are some creative solutions that it might make it make sense to “turn on” alimony while a divorce is pending.  One example is that a spouse that doesn’t work outside the home might need to demonstrate a consistent income stream in order to qualify for a mortgage.  In cases like that, many spouses reach agreements on whether there will be pendente lite alimony and ask the judge to make their agreement a court order.

There are also more high-conflict reasons to seek pendente lite alimony.  The most obvious are cases where a spouse is denied access to funds or the spouses have significant and ongoing conflict over marital funds.  In situations where the question of pendente lite alimony would need to be litigated, there should be a cost-benefit analysis.

The Comprehensive Connecticut Alimony Guide

Alimony is one of the most important issues in divorces.  And, it’s one of the most confusing.  There are no set formulas or rules on (1) whether there will be alimony, and, if so, (2) how it’s calculated or (3) how long it will last.  The good news is that this means there is tremendous flexibility to craft an individualized approach.  In order to prepare to make solid and informed decisions, you need to understand how alimony works. Our Comprehensive Connecticut Alimony Guide tells you everything you need to know about alimony in Connecticut.

Read: Alimony: The Comprehensive Connecticut Guide

Next Steps

To start making a plan for your divorce, reach out.  Our first step at Freed Marcroft, the Goals & Planning Conference, is designed to get to the heart of your problem and unveil your true goals.  We analyze those goals, plus the facts of your case, and present you with recommendations and options to move forward.

Schedule your Goals & Planning Conference today, or contact us either here or by phone at 860-560-8160.

Written by Meghan Freed