Tulsa Attorney BlogHow Can I Get Out of Paying Alimony in Oklahoma?

Make Your Spouse as Independent as Possible


divorce lawyer in Tulsa, OklaVideo Transcribed: How do I get out of paying alimony in Oklahoma? My name is Jame Wirth and I am a Tulsa lawyer, and that’s the question that we’re presented with today.

How do I get out of paying alimony? Relatively simple question, so obviously we’ll go with a super simple answer, don’t get married. That’s the obvious simple way to do it. Oklahoma is not a palimony state, so you do have to be married in order to request spousal support or alimony, so that’s the simplest solution. But my guess is that is not the answer that you’re looking for, that you’re probably already married, looking at the potential of a divorce and you want to know how to avoid alimony.

So I can talk about some specific defenses for that. So in alimony in the state of Oklahoma, it is allowed. Unlike child support, there are no specific guidelines for it. It’s not a calculator you plug numbers in that spits out the amount. People talk about rules of thumb, such that the length of the marriage divided by three could be an appropriate amount of spousal support. But that is not a rule by any means and every case is unique. But if you are in marriage looking at divorce or wanting to avoid spouse support, then you want to help your spouse be as independent as possible to be able to support themselves.

So, that’s the number one thing. Another thing is that sometimes it may be advantageous to do property division in lieu of spouse support. So if there is a property that could be divided, that needs to be divided, and maybe has some income associated with it, that could be a good argument. You provide them that property as part of their property asset division and then you say that given that they have that, they’re no longer in need of spouse support. Proving need is one of the major things you have to do in order to have a spousal support order.

The other one is you have to prove your ability to pay. So if you do not have the ability to pay spousal support, then the court should not award spousal support. So you want to look at what the ability to pay is, what the need is, and you really want to look at, in regards to the need, also the need has to be related to the marriage. So if the other party has a need for support, but that’s the same need that they had prior to the marriage, then you’ve got a good argument that the need that they have for support is not related to the marriage.

You should not be required to pay for it. So if they’re in the same position as when you found them, there could be a good argument there. However, if they gave up a career in order for you to pursue a career and now years later they’re in a much worse position than they would be in the job market, that can be grounds for spousal support. So you want to look at whether is there a need? Is it tied to the marriage? What is the other party’s plan for getting back on their feet? In the state of Oklahoma, spousal support is not forever. It always has an end date.

It’s specified in the order. It’s going to be this number of months for this amount and then you’re going to want to show that there is a plan for that person to be on their feet supporting themselves earlier because ultimately that’s the goal here that the court has. It’s not to award a bunch of money to people. It is to get both parties in order to be able to be independent of the marriage and to be able to support themselves. So what’s the plan for getting there? And if there’s not an appropriate plan that can be attacked by the party trying to avoid spouse support and be like, this plan is not going to help them be independent.

This is just going to put off the issue that they’re going to have difficulty supporting themselves. So what is a good plan to get them to be independent? Maybe that means a shorter term of spousal support, but with other things involved. So as far as avoiding spouse support, there’s no necessary surefire way other than not getting married in the state of Oklahoma. But if you find yourself in that circumstance of where you’re getting divorced and there’s a request for spousal support, I mean, how much money do they make? How much money do you make?

What is your ability to pay? What is their need? There are various issues that could be attacked there to try to get that amount lowered or to say that they are already sufficient and are not in need of that, that they’ve got the education and training to get a job to be able to support themselves. So if that’s an issue you’re dealing with though, here’s some general information that I provide in this video. But you’re going to want to talk to an attorney about your specific circumstances because there may be other things that are applicable to you and maybe not to other people.

So you’re going to want to contact an alimony attorney in Oklahoma for a private consult for that. To get that scheduled with somebody at my office, you can go online to makelaweasy.com.

"Make law easy!"