Alimony / Maintenance / Support
The term alimony means the same thing as spousal support or maintenance. Arkansas Law allows a judge to award temporary alimony to either spouse until a divorce is final. In most cases in which alimony is awarded, the alimony is “rehabilitative” and is awarded for a certain period in order to give the spouse time to get back on his/her feet. In the case of a long term marriage or where one spouse is ill, the court can establish a permanent spousal support arrangement.
Annulment vs. Divorce
An annulment is a legal procedure which abolishes a marriage as if it had never existed. The most common reason that a marriage is annulled is fraud. This might mean a failure to disclose some important fact to the spouse like a communicable disease, an inability to have children, a previous divorce or a criminal past. Other common reasons are bigamy, incest, or duress. Most people do not get annulments unless they have some legal, financial or religious reasons to avoid a divorce.
A contested divorce often comes about when there is substantial property or assets and a feeling by one spouse or the other that he/she deserves more. In Arkansas the court will fairly and equitably and fairly distribute the marital property. Factors considered by the Court when dividing marital property include each spouse’s earning power, non-marital property, services as the homemaker, duration of the marriage and the age and health of both parties.