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Should you pay a lump sum or monthly spousal support payments?

There are two ways that you can pay spousal support, lump sum and monthly payments. This post will discuss the benefits and potential pitfalls of a single lump sum payment. Alimony, or "spousal support," is money paid by one ex-spouse to the other to compensate for financial disparities.

Traditionally, one spouse would sacrifice professional development to focus on the family while the other continued building a career. Upon divorce, this sometimes resulted in the dependent spouse becoming impoverished. Spousal support is meant to correct this disparity.

A lump sum enables you to quickly move past your marriage. A divorce is an emotionally trying event for anyone, and no one wants a monthly reminder of that trying time. Additionally, emotional issues aside, if you miss a payment you could face sanctions. This means that you have to remember to send a payment every month, for the duration of your spousal support payments.

However, a lump sum isn't all good news. You won't save money. The court will calculate X number of payments over X number of years and arrive at a figure. You will have to pay this entire figure. Which, depending upon the length of your marriage and the wealth disparity between you and your ex-spouse, could easily run into the tens of thousands of dollars.

If you or a loved one is planning or going through a divorce, then you might want to speak to a lawyer. Spousal support is a complicated legal issue with which to contend. The court considers many factors when calculating or considering alimony payments. It is best if you approach these proceedings well informed about the law and the facts.

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