Spousal maintenance is different from dividing money or property; but the way that separating couples divide their money and property can affect the payment of spousal maintenance.
Spousal maintenance includes de facto maintenance.
You cannot use amica to seek spousal maintenance.
You can seek legal help about spousal maintenance from the free Legal Help Line in your state or territory.
A person has a responsibility to financially assist their former spouse or de facto partner, if that person cannot meet their own reasonable expenses from their personal income or assets.
The extent of the support depends on the needs of the person who wants to receive maintenance and the capacity of the other person to pay. Both spousal and de facto maintenance would usually be paid for a fixed period of time.
A number of factors need to be weighed up in relation to both partners. For example:
- your age and health
- your income, property, and financial resources
- your ability to work
- what is a suitable standard of living
- if the marriage has affected your ability to earn an income, and
- with whom the children (under 18 years of age or adult children who are disabled) live.
If a separating couple cannot agree on spousal maintenance and one of them wants to make a application to the family courts, time limits apply. If you do not apply within these time limits, you will need special permission of the court. Permission is not always granted.