Law Offices of Tedone and Morton, P.C.

Joliet Office


Plainfield Office


Joliet alimony attorneysThe number of divorce cases involving spousal maintenance have declined significantly over the last decade. Still, some divorcing parties may need financial assistance from their ex-spouse to achieve a self-sustaining future. Disabled parties who may not have previously qualified for social security because their marital income was too high, stay-at-home parents with little to no recent job training or experience, and financially disadvantaged spouses incapable of maintaining the lifestyle that their marriage afforded are a just a few examples.

Starting January 1, 2019, the tax laws that currently apply to spousal maintenance (which have been in place for more than 70 years) will be completely annihilated. What might this mean for you in your Illinois divorce, and how might it impact your future financial well-being? Learn more in the following sections, and discover how our seasoned divorce lawyers may be able to help mitigate the issues in your case.

Understanding the Changes to Spousal Maintenance Tax Laws 

Spouses who pay alimony have long relied on the tax law that made their spousal maintenance payments tax deductible. Spouses who received alimony had to claim their maintenance payments as taxable income at the end of the year, but it did not always impact them at tax time, as few receive a high enough payment to change their tax bracket. A direct result of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act's passage earlier this year, these changes will impact spousal maintenance laws, nationwide.

New Law is Expected to Leave Less Money for the Family Unit

Parties who expect to pay alimony in their divorce have long dreaded the turning of the calendar because they know it means they will likely have less money at the end of the year. What was not initially clear was how receiving spouses would be impacted. Sadly, their fate could result in downright disturbing financial consequences.

The reason for this is simple: The tax cut often dropped a paying spouse into a lower tax bracket at the end of the year, which gave them more discretionary spending money. As a result, paying spouses were often more likely to agree to a higher maintenance payment during divorce negotiations.

Because spousal maintenance payments will no longer be deductible, the payer's tax responsibility at the end of the year will remain the same, even if they pay alimony. If they were held to the same payment standard as before, they might end up with even less discretionary spending money (the amount a party has after their bills and expenses are paid) than the spouse to which they are making payments. Since the law would not allow this to happen in most situations, the paying spouse's maintenance obligation will likely be lower under the new law - so receiving spouses are getting less money. To make matters worse, paying parties may be less likely to even negotiate an alimony payment, as they are not receiving any benefits for paying. If ordered to pay, some parties still may refuse to do so, as there is no benefit for them.

How Our Joliet Divorce Lawyers Can Help with Your 2019 Divorce 

At Tedone & Morton, P.C., we work hard to protect the financial interests of our clients. Whether you expect to pay support or receive it in 2019, our seasoned Plainfield, IL divorce lawyers can help to mitigate the issues that may threaten your financial well-being. Call 815-666-1285 today.


Posted on

Illinois alimony attorneysAlthough not awarded as frequently as it once was, alimony (also known as spousal support) can provide financial relief for a disadvantaged spouse during and after divorce. Available as either a temporary or, in some cases, permanent aid, alimony is paid by a higher-income spouse to one that is disadvantaged. How do you determine if you are disadvantaged, how much might you be owed, and how can you increase your chances of receiving what you are entitled to in your divorce? The following information explains.

Are You Eligible?

Before an individual can determine the amount of spousal support they may be owed, they must first be deemed eligible for alimony payments. The courts do this by examining the financial situation and other aspects of the marriage, such as:

  • A spouse that has given up their career or education to advance the career of the other;
  • Physical, emotional, or mental issues that hinder the employability of a disadvantaged spouse;
  • Non-monetary contributions, such as caring for the home or children;
  • A significant financial disparity between spouses (even if both are working); and
  • A lack of training or education that is a direct result of the disadvantaged spouse's sacrifice.

This list is, by no means, comprehensive. Any number of circumstances or situations could result in an alimony award. Your attorney can answer any questions you may have about your eligibility for spousal support.

How Much Are You Owed?

In most cases, alimony is calculated using a basic formula. The courts look at the income of each party and subtract 20 percent of the receiving party's income from 30 percent of the paying party's income. Provided this amount does not exceed 40 percent of the couple's combined income, it is then multiplied by a pre-designated factor to determine how long support will be paid. This factor in the formula is based on the number of years the couple was married (0.20 for 5 or less; 0.40 for 5-10 years; 0.60 for 10-15 years; 0.80 for 15-20 years, and possible permanent support for any marriage lasting over 20 years).

How Our Joliet Divorce Lawyers Can Help

You do not have to wait until your divorce has been finalized to receive support. You also do not have to fight the battle alone. Instead, contact Law Offices of Tedone and Morton, P.C. for experienced legal assistance. Dedicated and experienced, our Joliet divorce lawyers will protect your rights, including your right to pursue alimony in a divorce. Get started by scheduling a personalized consultation. Call our offices at 815-666-1285 today.


  • Badges and Associations
  • Badges and Associations
  • Badges and Associations
Back to Top