Alimony, or spousal maintenance, is the financial support that one spouse provides to the other after divorce. It is separate from, and in addition to, the division of marital property. It can be either temporary or permanent. Factors relevant to an order of maintenance include the age and marketable skills of the intended recipient, the length of the marriage, and the income of both parties. Maintenance is most often used to provide support to a spouse who was financially dependent on the other during the marriage. Many states allow courts to consider marital fault in determining whether, and how much, maintenance should be granted.
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