Alimony law has been changing across the United States. Therefore, it's important to know what the law currently says about it. States are increasingly beginning to use spousal support guidelines. The American Law Institute also has its own recommendations for negotiating alimony.
Alimony is a concept that will possibly always cause some controversy. Part of the issue is how it came about and how it works today. Alimony was designed to be a way for a woman to take care of herself if her husband left her. In the past, women couldn't own property or may not have been able to remarry, depending on the circumstances. Therefore, alimony was the only financial support they could rely on after divorce.
Today, spousal support has less to do with a woman being able to support herself and more to do with either spouse, male or female, being able to support themselves following a divorce from a higher-earning partner. Whichever spouse earned less has the potential to obtain alimony if they're unable to support themselves on their income alone. A spouse might also be able to obtain support as a kind of "payback" for supporting their spouses instead of being able to advance their own careers.
Most spousal support these days is temporary. People typically no longer rely on it for the rest of their lives. It's expected that some people will need help for a short time, but judges today often want to see divorce spouses be able to find a job to support themselves and eventually release an ex-spouse from the support obligation. Your family law attorney can help you seek the spousal support you need.