Juliana Smith
BN (MID) LLB GDLP - Principal Lawyer

Heidi Keighran
LLB (Hons) GDLP - Associate Lawyer

03 5444 1181
admin@jslaw.com.au

Under the Family Law Act, spousal maintenance provides a potential entitlement for married and de facto couples separating after 1 March 2009.

No set formula exists for deciding how much support will be paid. If the two parties cannot reach an agreement on their own, then the partner with the possible entitlement can make an application to the family law court to seek a determination. Family law solicitors in Kyneton can help with legal advice and representation when it comes to spousal support and any other issues related to the separation.

How is spousal support determined?

To determine the amount of spousal maintenance that is just and equitable, the Court considers several factors including the lower-earning spouse’s financial need and the capacity of the higher-earning spouse to meet that requirement. The Court will then use its discretion to determine a reasonable payment. This assessment involves both parties exchanging a financial statement that includes their income and expenses as well as providing a copy of these statements to the Court.

One area where couples tend to disagree is what they each consider “reasonable expenses.” Clearly, a lower-income spouse has a financial need, and a higher-earning spouse can meet that need, but a low- income spouse still has an obligation to meet his or her own needs and pursue employment when possible. However, each situation is unique, and the Court takes this into account. For example, a low- income spouse with primary care of young children may choose to commit themselves to this role and will not be required to deplete their assets before receiving spousal maintenance. Spousal maintenance may be paid periodically or as a lump sum payment. The payment option chosen depends on each spouse’s particular circumstances.

Speak to a Family Lawyer in Kyneton to Help with Your Spousal Maintenance Application

If you believe you may have a spousal maintenance entitlement, it’s wise to seek the advice of a family law firm in Kyneton. Rather than pursuing the matter on your own, seeking help from family law solicitors can provide you with the best possible outcome in a complicated situation. A good lawyer at a reputable firm has the experience and knowledge to advise you on your rights, prepare you for any Court proceedings, and help ensure that you aren’t overlooking something to which you may be entitled. At JSLaw, we understand the importance of accessible legal counsel and the value of personalised service.

Feel free to call us on 03 5444 1181 or email us at admin@jslaw.com.au with any questions or to book a consultation.