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What is spousal maintenance in Texas?  Many states have alimony so that after a divorce so that the person who was dependent upon their spouse for support can maintain a level of living. 

Requirements

Spousal maintenance in Texas is provided when you lack sufficient property to meet your minimal needs upon the dissolution of your marriage.  In addition, when requesting spousal maintenance in Texas you must also show one of the following:

  • Your spouse was convicted of domestic violence against you or your child;
  • You are not able to earn sufficient income to provide for your minimum reasonable needs because of an incapacitating physical or mental disability;
  • You have been married to the other spouse for 10 years or longer and you lack the ability to earn sufficient income to provide for your minimum reasonable needs; or
  • You are the custodian of a child of the marriage of any age who requires substantial care and personal supervision because of a physical or mental disability that prevents you from earning sufficient income to provide for your minimum reasonable needs.

Other Factors

The court will also consider other factors in determining spousal maintenance in Texas.  They include:

  • Your ability to provide for your minimum reasonable needs;
  • Your education and employment skills, the time necessary to acquire sufficient education or training;
  • The duration of the marriage;
  • Your age, employment history, earning ability, and physical and emotional condition;
  • the effect on your spouse of child support payments or maintenance;
  • acts by either of you resulting in excessive or abnormal expenditures or destruction, concealment, or fraudulent disposition of community property, joint tenancy, or other property held in common;
  • Your contribution to the education, training, or increased earning power of your spouse;
  • The property brought to the marriage by either of you;
  • Your contribution as a homemaker;
  • Marital misconduct, including adultery and cruel treatment, by either of you during the marriage; and
  • Any history or pattern of family violence, as defined by Section 71.004.

Duration and Amount

Spousal maintenance in Texas is limited in duration by Statute.  It is intended to only provide you maintenance a sufficient time to allow you to take care of your own needs.  It will depend upon the factors above.  Your attorney will explain the limitations on the duration.

The amount of spousal maintenance can be agreed to or determined by the court.  However, it cannot exceed $5,000 or 20% of your spouses gross income; whichever is smaller.

Conclusion

If you are in a marriage that you cannot tolerate.  You are considering divorce.    But you do not have the economic ability to get out.  Talk with an attorney regarding spousal maintenance in Texas to understand your options.