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Collin County divorce attorneyIf you are considering divorce, you may have concerns about your financial future. You may be wondering if you will be able to make ends meet and still maintain your current lifestyle. At Law Office of Brian Bagley, we can set your mind at ease and help you determine if you qualify for spousal maintenance.  

Spousal Maintenance

In Texas, spousal support and spousal maintenance are different. Spousal support is a voluntary agreement between both parties to financially support the other spouse on agreed-upon terms during the divorce. Spousal maintenance, on the other hand, is ordered by the court. Under state law, the court cannot order a spouse—the “obligor”—to pay more than 20 percent of their gross monthly salary up to a maximum of $5,000.

Spousal Maintenance Eligibility

In Texas, divorced spouses do not automatically get spousal maintenance, it is awarded in very limited circumstances. Typically, spousal maintenance may be granted if the divorce would leave a spouse without sufficient funds to meet basic needs and at least one of the following is true:


Plano divorce lawyerFinancial pressures can lead to marital discord. As we face the highest inflation rates in 40 years, you may be thinking about divorce. The current divorce rate in the United States is 2.3 per 1,000 people. Traditionally, we have seen divorce rates fall during economic downturns. Couples stayed together during the Great Depression and again in the early 1980s when inflation was about as high as it is now.  

At Law Office of Brian Bagley, we do not believe it is necessary to stay in an unhappy or unhealthy marriage because of a recession. Money problems are often not the sole reason a married couple calls it quits. There could be circumstances involving infidelity or violence that you just cannot tolerate any longer. Today, we will go over key factors that determine if spousal support or spousal maintenance would be appropriate.

Personal Decision

A divorce, although always a difficult decision, can lead to peace of mind. It can also end a toxic marriage. Every couple needs to look at their specific situation before deciding to file for divorce. 


Plano alimony lawyerThe terms alimony, spousal support, and spousal maintenance are often used interchangeably, but each actually has its own definition under the Texas Family Code. It is important to understand the differences because Texas actually imposes a very high standard to satisfy for any spouses seeking maintenance or support.

Many divorcing spouses are adamant about not wanting to pay their former partners any money when they are already paying them child support. People need to keep in mind the multiple factors a court will look to in determining whether spousal support will be appropriate.

Calculating Spousal Maintenance and Duration for Support

Texas Family Code § 8.001 defines the term maintenance as meaning an award of payments from the income of a spouse to support the other spouse in a suit for dissolution of a marriage. The term alimony is not used in the Texas Family Code, so the only time alimony may be applicable to a divorce case is when the spouses specifically agree to alimony payments as part of their final divorce decree.


Wylie Divorce LawyerThe end of your marriage can bring about many questions about your future life. One of the most unsettling for many is how secure their financial situation will be. For many spouses who may not have held employment while they were married due to a variety of circumstances, being divorced will leave them without a sufficient income. While Texas has relatively strict criteria to meet to receive alimony, also known as spousal support or spousal maintenance, there are a limited number of ways to qualify which will help you meet your financial needs.

Qualifying for Spousal Support in Texas

In Texas, there are three ways that you may receive spousal support after your marriage:

Plano Divorce attorney Spousal SupportWhen most people think about divorce, they only consider the personal and emotional consequences of the split. While divorce can certainly be a heartbreaking experience, it can also have profound financial implications. If you are getting divorced in Texas, you may wonder if you are entitled to alimony or spousal support. Spousal support refers to financial assistance that one spouse pays the other after the marriage has ended. The laws regulating spousal support in Texas are complex and differ significantly from laws in other states. To learn more, contact an experienced Texas divorce lawyer qualified to handle spousal support concerns.

How to Get Spousal Support in Texas

There are three main ways that a divorcing spouse may receive spousal support. The first is through a valid marital agreement such as a prenuptial agreement or postnuptial agreement. The second way that you may receive spousal support is by negotiating a spousal support arrangement with your spouse. Only a small percentage of divorce and family law cases go to trial. More often, cases are resolved outside of the courtroom through settlement negotiations between the parties’ respective lawyers. Your lawyer may be able to help you and your spouse reach an agreement about the amount and duration of spousal support along with your agreements about property division, child custody, and other divorce concerns.  

Lastly, the court may award spousal support. However, Texas courts only award spousal support if certain criteria are met. In order to get spousal support, you will need to demonstrate that the divorce will place a significant financial burden on you and that you will not be able to pay your bills or meet other financial obligations without support. You will also need to show that at least one of the following are true:

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