What is Rehabilitative Alimony?

Explained by Our Houston Alimony Attorney

Photo of GavelRehabilitative alimony is a form of alimony that is paid for a specific period of time. The purpose of this type of alimony is to allow the dependent spouse to obtain education or job training, find employment and begin supporting herself or himself without the assistance of the other spouse.

Rehabilitative alimony is often appropriate in situations where the dependent spouse relied on the other spouse’s income during the marriage and needs support during a limited time in order to refresh his or her job skills and/or conduct a job search. However, what type of alimony you need depends largely on your individual circumstances. Accordingly, it is important that you seek the guidance of a Houston divorce attorney before deciding which form of alimony to pursue. A qualified Houston divorce lawyer can help.

Who is Eligible for Rehabilitative Alimony?

Rehabilitative alimony is generally available if the marriage lasted at least 10 years and if the spouse seeking alimony payments lacks the means to provide for his or her needs in the short-term. The spouse who is seeking alimony must demonstrate that he or she needs financial support while obtaining the training or job skills necessary to become self-sufficient. It should be noted that rehabilitative alimony is different from temporary alimony, which simply allows for alimony payments (based upon the couple’s standard of living) prior to the finalization of the divorce.

Limitations of Rehabilitative Alimony

Because rehabilitative alimony is intended to be temporary financial assistance, it is limited by statute as to duration depending on the length of the marriage. For marriages between 10 and 20 years, it is limited to 5 years; for marriages between 20-30 years, it is limited to 7 years, and for marriages exceeding 30 years in length, rehabilitative maintenance may be awarded for not more than 10 years.

Texas courts have a duty to limit the duration of the maintenance or alimony to the shortest reasonable period.

Additionally, the amount of rehabilitative alimony paid is limited to the lesser of $5,000 per month or 20% of the paying spouse’s monthly gross income. When rehabilitative alimony is granted, the court must approve a plan that not only specifies the amount of each alimony payment but also details the rehabilitation process, including the time constraints for this process.

Is Rehabilitative Alimony Right for Me?

Determining whether rehabilitative alimony is the right form of alimony to seek can be a difficult decision. The Houston alimony lawyer at John K. Grubb & Associates, P.C., is experienced in calculating alimony, and we are available to help you with determining the right type of alimony for your individual situation. For assistance, contact a Houston spousal support attorney at our firm today.