How the Court will determine an award of alimony
Utah law establishes factors that the Court can consider when determining an award of alimony, including: the financial need of the receiving spouse, the receiving spouse’s earning potential, the ability of the paying spouse to provide support, the length of the marriage, who has custody of the children, whether the receiving spouse worked at a business owned by the paying spouse, and whether the receiving spouse directly contributed to an increase in the paying spouse’s skill or earning potential, the fault of the paying spouse’s in the breakup of the marriage, and the standard of living that the spouses enjoyed while married.
In most cases, the Court considers only two of these factors: the receiving party’s financial need for alimony and the paying party’s ability to pay alimony. Each party is required to provide financial information showing each party’s monthly income and their monthly expenses. If the party’s monthly expenses are greater than their earning capability, then they have a need for alimony. If the party’s monthly expenses is less than their earned income, then they have an ability to pay alimony.
If one party has a need for alimony but the other party does not have the ability to pay, then there will not be an alimony award. If one party has the ability to pay alimony but the other party does not have a need, then there will not be an alimony award. Only if one party has a need for alimony and the other party has the ability to pay will alimony be awarded.