Can I Get Alimony if I Already Collect Child Support?

Family Lawyer

When you and your spouse decided it was time to file for divorce, it likely did not come as an easy decision. Separating the life you once shared can be complicated. This is especially true considering you will be responsible with deconstructing a marriage that you and your spouse have built. There will be a number of issues to contend with. In some situations, alimony may be an explorable option for a spouse who is not able to maintain their standard of living. 

Alimony/Spousal Support

In some cases, one spouse may be a higher earner than the other, making it difficult for them to keep up the standard of living they once knew. This may result in lengthy marriages, or situations where one person has stayed home to raise the children while the other has continued in the workforce. When this occurs, alimony may be an option to consider. Alimony can provide a spouse with financial assistance that is paid to them by the other party. While alimony may be provided over the long term, it’s important to note that in some situations, alimony may be temporary. The court will look to your specific situation to determine the amount and length by which alimony is paid. Considerations often made may include:

  • The length of the marriage
  • The time it may take for a person to re-enter the workforce
  • Whether job training is necessary
  • The standard of living
  • Whether the other party can support themselves and maintain spousal support

There is no guarantee as to whether alimony or spousal support may be granted. A family lawyer may provide you with the legal representation you need to understand your options and represent you during court proceedings. 

Child Support

Child support is a different type of benefit that occurs during a divorce. When children are involved, they often are residing in one home more frequently than the other. Child support ensures that both parents are providing financial support to the children that they share. In most cases, child support may be paid to the parent who has physical custody of the child. This is a specific amount that is paid to the other parent on a monthly basis. Child support sets out to assist the custodial parent with: 

  • Maintaining the child’s standard of living
  • Covering basic economic costs like:
    • Food
    • Shelter
    • Clothing
  • Education and Childcare
  • Extracurricular Activities

When two people choose to proceed with a divorce, they should work to ensure that the child experiences very little impact. Child support is one way of helping to maintain the child’s standard of living they had prior to divorce. 

The Impact One May Have on Another

Child custody and alimony are not one in the same. Alimony may be pursued in divorce situations where children were not involved. When children are involved, it may be possible to pursue both alimony and child support. However, it’s important to speak with a family lawyer when seeking these options. In some cases, child support payments may have an impact on the amount of alimony you may be able eligible for. Each situation may be different, and often, court decisions regarding alimony and child support may vary, making it important to acquire the legal representation of a family lawyer to help pursue your specific situation. 

When facing divorce, it’s always a good idea to consult with a family lawyer regarding your particular situation. Divorce can be an emotionally fueled and often challenging time. As you prepare for your life to drastically change, managing contentious court situations can make for a stressful process. A family lawyer in Bloomington, IL can represent you by advocating for your needs and helping you to have a clear understanding of alimony and child support. 

Thanks to Pioletti & Pioletti for their insight into family law and child support.