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Stay organized if alimony is awarded

There are so many issues involved in a divorce. If you have children, custody and support payments will be central to divorce talks. If a bevy of assets are involved in your marriage, then property division will play a huge role. And if there is a potential financial disparity between the spouses in the wake of a divorce, then alimony -- also called spousal support -- could be awarded.

It is important to realize that alimony is not guaranteed in any given divorce. There are complex factors that have to be taken into account by a judge before he or she determines that spousal support should be awarded. The length of the marriage, the financial potential of the two spouses, and health of the spouses all factor greatly into this decision.

If it is awarded, you should be aware that you will need to remain organized after the payments begin. Whether you are the paying or receiving spouse, it doesn't matter: keeping meticulous records of the payments is important to ensure a paper trail and to protect yourself in case of any divorce litigation or spousal support-specific litigation.

So what information should you record? All of the specifics of the payment are necessary. The amount of the check, the addresses used, the date of the check, the bank used, the account type used and the account number, and even a carbon copy of the check (if available) are all critical pieces of information you should retain and record.

Source: FindLaw, "Alimony Guidelines: What Records to Keep Regarding Your Alimony," Accessed Jan. 12, 2018

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