The judges in Pennsylvania who determine whether soon-to-be ex-spouses will receive alimony must consider many factors — 17 of them to be exact. These factors help the judges determine who should pay alimony, if anyone, and how much should be paid.

The 17 factors are:

— The physical, emotional and mental conditions of each party and their ages.

— The earning capacities of each party.

— How long the couple was married.

— The income sources of each party, including benefits such as retirement, insurance or medical benefits.

— The expected inheritances of each party.

— How much one party has contributed to the training, education or increased earning power of the other party.

— The couple’s standard of living.

— Whether there are children involved.

— The liabilities and assets of each party.

— The education of both parties and how long it would take for the party seeking alimony to acquire the education needed to find employment.

— The contribution of one spouse as a homemaker.

— Whether any property was brought into the marriage.

— Each party’s relative needs.

— Whether there was marital misconduct.

— How an alimony award would affect the tax ramifications for each party.

— Whether the party seeking alimony lacks property to provide for his or her needs.

— Whether the party seeking alimony is not capable of finding gainful employment.

Alimony can be a contentious area in a divorce. If you believe you are due to receive alimony or if you do not believe you should pay alimony, an attorney can provide advice on how to proceed.

Source: legis.state.pa.us, “Chapter 37 Alimony and Support,” accessed April 24, 2017