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Alimony payments aren't just for men anymore

According to a study from the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, women in Pennsylvania and throughout the country are increasingly being asked to pay alimony. Of the lawyers surveyed, 45 percent said that the number of women paying spousal support had gone up in the past three years. Furthermore, 54 percent said that a larger number of women were paying child support. This is largely a consequence of females earning more money than they did in previous decades.

A Pew Research study found that 40 percent of families had a woman as the primary breadwinner. Although some ex-wives may be surprised about having to make alimony payments, it was ruled to be a gender-neutral issue by the Supreme Court in 1979. Furthermore, the concept of alimony has changed from being a lifelong source of income to a temporary one. In many cases, it is used as a bridge until an individual can return to the workforce.

Research shows that men and women generally dislike the concept of alimony. However, data also shows that women tend to be especially upset that their former spouses can't make their own money. This is partially a product of societal attitudes, but those who study the matter say that women paying alimony can be seen as a sign of empowerment.

There are many factors that may determine if a person is entitled to alimony. For instance, if one spouse made significantly more money or has more assets, he or she would likely be ordered to make payments. In some cases, alimony is determined as part of a prenuptial agreement. An attorney may review an agreement to determine the validity of its terms.

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