The court considers multiple statutory factors in determining the amount and duration of spousal support — or whether it is merited at all. Those factors range from age and health to earning capacity, income disparity, and child-rearing contributions.
There are two categories of support:
Interim spousal support — Temporary payments during divorce proceedings to cover living expenses.
Final periodic spousal support — Ongoing payments after divorce (sometimes called "alimony").
Final support is very difficult to obtain. It is typically awarded only for 6 to 18 months to enable a former spouse to become self-sufficient. More importantly, to be eligible for final support, you must also show that you are not at fault for the breakdown of the marriage.