Ending a marriage is typically traumatic for any Minnesota couple, and although most spouses may want to make a clean break and proceed with a new life, some connection will remain if there are children or if the court orders spousal support to be paid. The person paying alimony will likely not be keen on spending many years of supporting an ex-spouse, and, similarly, the one receiving it might want to become self-supporting as soon as possible. Both would want to know how long alimony will last.
Each case is unique, and the period of spousal support can vary widely. It will depend on state laws and also on personal circumstances. Typically, spousal support only lasts as long as it is officially needed. Lifetime alimony is no longer common since both spouses in most families are educated and able to earn an income.
Certain factors that can lead to the termination of alimony might include the receiving party finding a new partner and moving in with him or her. Depending on state law, spousal support might only stop when that spouse has children with a new partner. Remarriage is a valid reason for stopping alimony payments in all states.
However, court-ordered alimony can only be stopped by the court. The paying party is entitled to petition the court at any time to modify or terminate alimony payments. Even upon learning that an ex-spouse has remarried, payments can only stop with the permission of the court. Anyone in Minnesota who has questions about alimony or other divorce matters can get answers from an experienced divorce attorney, who can also provide support and guidance throughout any ensuing legal proceedings.