Also called maintenance or spousal support. In a divorce or separation, the money paid by one spouse to the other in order to fulfill the financial obligation that comes with marriage. This amount is usually set by a judge with some jurisdictions having statutory formula to follow and others not.
An amount given to one spouse to another while they are separated. Historically, the word "alimony" refers to monies paid to while spouses are separated. Where they are divorced, the monies payable are technically referred to as 'maintenance'.
The maintenance or support which a husband is bound to give to his wife upon separation from her; or the support which either father or mother is bound to give to his or her children, though this is more usually called maintenance.
The causes for granting alimony to the wife are desertion, or cruelty of the husband and divorce.
In Louisiana by alimony is meant the nourishment, lodging and support of the person who claims it. It includes education when the person to whom alimony is due is a minor.
Alimony is granted in proportion to the wants of the person requiring it, and the circumstances of those who are to pay it. By the common law, parents and children owe each other alimony.
Alimony is allowed to the wife, pendente lite, almost as a matter of course whether she be plaintiff or defendant, for the obvious reason that she has generally no other means of living. But there are special cases where it will not be allowed, as when the wife, pending the progress of the suit, went to her father's, who agreed with the husband to support her for services.
This entry contains material from Bouvier's Legal Dictionary, a work published in the 1850's.
Courtesy of the 'Lectric Law Library