Alimony, or spousal support, is financial support paid from one spouse to another in divorce cases. The purpose is to help a financially dependent spouse get back on his or her feet after the marriage ends. Whether you are the spouse in need of support, or the one from whom it’s asked, much is at stake. The strength of your claim could determine how much money you receive or pay. Both parties have to be prepared.
At Greenville Family Law, we represent spouses on both sides of alimony claims. The following is a checklist of items and information you will need, regardless of which spouse you are.
Obviously, this is one of the most important categories of information you’ll need in your alimony case. If you are the party asking for support, you’ll have to demonstrate financial need. If you are one from whom support is demanded, you need to show your inability to pay what is asked. Here are some records you should gather:
Your recent pay stubs. You may wish to have several if your income varies.
Your last tax return, W-2, 1099, and other tax forms. For the same reason, a tax return can provide more accurate income information.
Bank records. Particularly, your checking and savings accounts.
Details of your monthly expenses. There are alimony worksheets you can use to list and total these.
Monthly child support payments. Whether you make or receive child support, be sure to have records of what you pay.
Financial declaration. This form will be considered by the court and will include much of the above information. Still, you will need the actual records mentioned above, and others.
Employment and education information
The nature of your employment and education may prove relevant in your alimony case. The other spouse may claim you are not earning enough or intentionally earning less than you are able. On the other hand, you may be earning as much as you can given the economy and your education. Consider having these records:
- An official job description that details your tasks and pay
- Records of any promotions or demotions you have received
- Information about your educational background, including degrees and certificates earned
- Bonuses received or that you will receive
- How many jobs you’ve had in the last few years
- How long you’ve worked your current job
Information concerning fault
Marital fault essentially means who is responsible for the marriage coming to an end. Alimony may be awarded despite evidence of marital fault. But, it may not be awarded if the spouse requesting it has committed adultery. If there are allegations of adultery, you will need evidence supporting or refuting it, depending on which spouse you are. That may include:
- Text messages, emails, and other written evidence
- Photos or videos evidencing adultery
- Suspicious purchases or financial transactions
- Eyewitness testimony (which may help prove or refute adultery allegations)
- Other evidence that either proves or refutes adultery allegations
It’s Important To Work With An Attorney On Your Alimony Case
The above items are just the start of building a comprehensive alimony case. You will likely need additional documents and information in your particular matter. This is where it’s critical to work with an experienced attorney. Greenville Family Law is here to advocate for you. We understand South Carolina alimony laws and we know how to build a winning case. Give us a call to schedule your initial consultation today.