What You Should Know About Divorce and Alimony

With the rising costs of daycare, more parents are opting to stay home with their young children. But in the case of divorce, the stay-at-home parent may be entitled to alimony from the primary “breadwinner.”

Unfortunately, there’s no given formula on how judges determine alimony payments. But the primary caregiver of the children, who could not hold a job due to their parental responsibilities, has a good case for requesting alimony payments from the soon to be ex-spouse.

If you are in the middle of a divorce, here’s what you should expect to receive as a primary caretaker or pay as the primary income earner.


Qualifying Factors For Alimony

Arkansas judges are free to make their decision on alimony amounts; there is no rubric for awarding alimony payments. That’s why individuals need a trustworthy attorney when they are seeking a divorce.

If you were the stay-at-home parent for a number of years during your marriage, it’s reasonable to ask for financial support from your soon-to-be ex-partner. A large gap on your resume can affect your hiring status, but spousal support can help you care for your children, pay bills, and secure housing while searching for a job.




Here are some of the important factors that will determine if an individual qualifies for alimony:

  • Assets between the couple
  • Living situation
  • Child custody
  • Annual income
  • Length of marriage
  • Debts acquired during marriage

All of these factors will be considered by the judge when ruling in favor (or not in favor) of rewarding alimony.


Three Types Of Alimony In Arkansas

Alimony doesn’t mean you’re on the hook for paying your ex-partner for life. The courts of Arkansas have three different types of alimony:

  • Temporary
  • Short-Term
  • Permanent


Temporary is the shortest time frame for alimony, and it only covers the time it takes to find new housing during the divorce.

Short-term alimony encompasses the time it would take for an unemployed spouse to find a new job. This time frame may include receiving a certificate or college degree.

Permanent alimony is rare. This type of alimony is typically awarded to individuals who cannot provide for themselves. However, if the ex-spouse gets remarried, permanent alimony can be reconsidered in court.



If you want more information about alimony in Arkansas, take a look at Hickey & Hull’s blog post about the qualifying, award, and length of alimony payments.


How To Determine If You're Responsible For Alimony

Even though Arkansas judges don’t have strict rules to award alimony, here are some questions that may influence their decision:

  • Was there a stay-at-home parent?
    • How many years did this individual remain unemployed?
  • Who was the primary income earner?
  • If you own property, who pays the mortgage? If you own a house, who pays the taxes and/or home insurance?



You might think child support would play into the alimony amount, but it does not. The primary caregiver of the kids will be awarded a separate amount of support for the children during a divorce.