When the concept of alimony first started, it was mainly for the benefit of wives who had stayed home with the children and were homemakers without a job outside of the home. At this time, it was uncommon for women to work outside the home, so when they divorced, they had financial hardships because they could not easily find work or become self-supporting.
However, times have changed drastically. Today, many women work and are very successful in their chosen fields. With this change in the landscape of employment has also come a change in the way courts award alimony.
No longer just men
In the past, courts usually ordered men to pay alimony because they were the higher earners and less likely to be the parent who stayed at home raising the children. Because this is not entirely true anymore, MarketWatch explains that many women now find themselves paying spousal maintenance after a divorce.
When it happens
Sometimes women end up paying support because they simply make more than their husband, even if he has a nice job. Other times, though, the husband will be going through unemployment or not working by choice. There may be a long history of you earning more than your husband because you have a better job.
A common argument that women make in court is that the husband’s earning potential is more than theirs even if he is not making a good income. However, the court will often look at the situation as it was something you were fine with during the marriage. It became your lifestyle so that factors into the spousal support order.