Calculating alimony is a complicated mixture of various considerations. Unlike child support, which has a rigid formula, there is more flexibility with calculating alimony. With that being said, there are still three main issues that a judge will look at:

  1. One party’s need vs the other party’s ability to pay
  2. Standard of Living
  3. Length of the marriage.

Of these factors, the length of the marriage may be the most important one. For example, a marriage that lasts at least 17 years is considered a “long-term marriage.” When a divorce involves a long-term marriage, then the judge could order the higher earning party to pay “permanent alimony” to the other party. However, if a marriage lasts under 11 years, it is considered a “short-term marriage.” Short-term marriages are much less likely to get any form of alimony, especially, “permanent alimony.”