Is Alimony Permanent in New York State?

A Nassau County Alimony Lawyer calculating finances or budgeting with a calculator and documents on a wooden desk.

Alimony, also known as spousal support, is a legal obligation for a person to provide financial support to their spouse during separation or after divorce. The purpose of alimony is to give the financially dependent spouse the opportunity to become financially independent after divorce. Alimony is usually not meant to be permanent. Contact our Nassau County Alimony Lawyer if you are someone who requires alimony or you believe your spouse is requesting an unreasonable alimony agreement.

What factors are considered when determining the amount of alimony?

Listed below are the factors considered:

  • Income of both spouses
  • Health conditions of both spouses
  • Age of both spouses
  • Martial property
  • Taxes
  • Both spouses earning capacity
  • Education of both spouses
  • Work history
  • Pensions or other benefits gained or lost to benefit the marriage
  • Interruptions in education or career to benefit spouse or raise children
  • If the spouses share children
  • Child custody agreement
  • Monthly expenses
  • Debts
  • Inheritances

What does it mean to cite fault grounds?

To cite fault grounds means to place the blame on one spouse for the ending of the marriage. For example, it is common for spouses to cite fault grounds of adultery hoping it will result in a favorable outcome when determining their alimony payment. However, citing fault grounds will usually not impact the amount of alimony given or received.

What are the different types of alimony?

  1. Permanent alimony is based on the duration of the marriage. For example, if the marriage lasted 15 years, alimony may be awarded for 15-30% of the time you were married. This percentage typically increases with the number of years married.
  2. Rehabilitative alimony is for spouses who put their careers on hold to support their partner. This is given so they can receive the proper education or training to find a sufficient job to support themselves.
  3. Reimbursement alimony is used to pay back a spouse if they supported their partner while they were pursuing their education.

Can alimony payments be adjusted over time? When do they end?

Alimony payments can be modified over time or even terminated upon a significant change in circumstances. If the spouse receiving alimony receives a job promotion, inheritance, or comes into a sum of money that benefits their financial situation, the spouse paying alimony can request a modification to lower their payments. Other circumstances that could result in a modification to alimony are serious medical conditions, loss of employment, remarrying, or death of a spouse. Contact our Nassau County Divorce Lawyer to learn more about how we can help your situation.


Barrows Levy PLLC is a dedicated New York law firm focused on providing quality legal services to clients in New York City and Long Island. If you require a lawyer who has notable experience handling family and estate planning matters, we are available to help. Contact Barrows Levy PLLC to schedule a consultation with one of our experienced attorneys today. 

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