When you get divorced, you may be ordered to pay alimony to your former spouse. There are different kinds of alimony that your former spouse may request or that the judge may order. Which one gets ordered depends on a lot of things, including your income and earning potential, your spouse's income and earning potential, and whether or not there are children that will be affected by the divorce. Alimony is separate from child support. Child support is specifically to help support your children, while alimony is there to help your former spouse after the divorce. 

Permanent Alimony

If your spouse is granted permanent alimony, that means that you will be paying them alimony for the indefinite future. There are a very few things that can end those payments; one is death and another is if your former spouse remarries or starts to live with someone else. Generally, your spouse's lawyer will request this form of alimony if your spouse hasn't held a job during the marriage, is disabled, or never received any kind of employment skills. 

Rehabilitative Alimony

This kind of alimony is there to help your former spouse to get back on their feet after the divorce. You may be paying this kind of alimony for long enough for your former spouse to get job training and a job, or to find a better job. Or, it may be granted to your spouse if they were a stay-at-home parent so that they can continue to stay at home with young children until the children are older. Generally, that age is set in the alimony order so that there is no question as to when the alimony will end. 

Reimbursement Alimony

If your spouse supported you while you were going to school or receiving some kind of job training and that education helped you to get a better job, increased your earning potential, or increased your income, your spouse may ask that a sum equaling that amount be repaid to them. If the judge orders you to pay reimbursement alimony, you may not have to pay back the whole amount; instead, you may only have to pay back a portion of the sum. 

If you are getting a divorce, your former partner may ask for alimony. If you are concerned about having to pay alimony, your attorney should be able to help you by trying to limit how much you may have to pay. For more information, talk to a lawyer at a law firm such as Hackworth Law.