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As husbands' incomes increased, and with it the possibility of paying alimony, the awarding of alimony increased, generally because a wife could show a need for ongoing financial support, and the husband had the ability to pay.Alimony moved beyond support to permitting the more dependent spouse to become financially independent or to have the same standard of living as during the marriage or common law marriage, though this was not possible in most cases.
The courts are generally reluctant to modify an existing agreement unless the reasons are compelling.Child support is considered a payment that a parent is making for the support of their offspring, and the parent who pays it pays the taxes. state law establishes requirements regarding alimony (and child support) payments, recovery and penalties.However, alimony is treated as taxable income, in most countries, to the receiving spouse, and, in most cases, deducted from the gross income of the paying spouse (the United States IRS does not allow for child support to be deducted from AGI). A spouse trying to recover back alimony sometimes may use only the collection procedures that are available to all other creditors (such as reporting the amount due to a collection agency).The term alimony comes from the Latin word alimōnia ("nourishment, sustenance", from alere, "to nourish"), from which also alimentary (of, or relating to food, nutrition, or digestion) and the Scots law concept of aliment, and was a rule of sustenance to assure the wife's lodging, food, clothing, and other necessities after divorce.137.If a man wish to separate from a woman who has borne him children, or from his wife who has borne him children: then he shall give that wife her dowry, and a part of the usufruct of field, garden, and property, so that she can rear her children.As a result of these Appellate Cases, for example, Mississippi judges cannot order an end date to any alimony award.
In 2012, Massachusetts signed into law comprehensive alimony reform.Where a divorce or dissolution of marriage (civil union) is granted, either party may ask for post-marital alimony.It is not an absolute right, but may be granted, the amount and terms varying with the circumstances.This law sets limits on alimony and eliminates lifetime alimony.Similarly, in 2013, Colorado signed into law alimony (Spousal Maintenance) reform, creating a standardized non-presumptive guideline upon which courts can rely. states are 'no-fault' states, where one does not have to show fault to get divorced.In some jurisdictions the court always has jurisdiction to grant maintenance should one of the former spouses become a public charge.