When a party walks into a case, the only thing on their mind is their side of the case. If people had a better understanding of the additional costs of the litigation, then they may be more willing to make a fair deal. In this post, I want to address, some, but definitely not all of the associated costs of litigation, both real and emotional.
In a dissolution of a long-term marriage where there is a difference in the spouses' income, it is possible that the higher earning spouse may be required to pay spousal maintenance, formerly known as alimony. Whether maintenance should be paid depends on a number of factors including the income and needs of the parties, realistic earning potential, duration of the marriage, the age, health and education of the parties, and the standard of living established during the marriage. Under an early version of the maintenance statute, once the court found that maintenance was appropriate, it had broad discretion in setting the amount and length of maintenance. It made it incredibly difficult for attorneys to predict maintenance outcomes for their clients.