Even though many Los Angeles residents may believe that wealth is the answer to woes, in some situations it can create problems instead of eliminate them. A divorce is one example of a time when money becomes a complicating factor, in part because of the disputes over alimony that may arise. Stories of celebrity couples and their divorce settlements can seem surreal to average Californians who never contemplated the sums of money frequently discussed during celebrity splits.
One such example of a noteworthy divorce settlement involves Silvio Berlusconi and his ex-wife, Veronica Lario. In addition to being the former Prime Minister of Italy, Berlusconi is also the owner of AC Milan, which has made him one of the richest men in the world. As a result of that wealth, the divorce settlement stated that Lario would receive monthly alimony payments of $4 million. The couple had been married nearly twenty years when they separated and have three adult children. The split was apparently due to a scandal involving Berlusconi's attendance at a party celebrating the birthday of an 18-year old aspiring model.
Even when such large sums are not at stake, alimony is still very important to many couples. In California, many factors play a role in whether alimony, also known as spousal support, is awarded. There are statutory criteria and guidelines, but judges generally have discretion in applying the criteria and making final decisions. While income is a significant factor in the decision, so are considerations about a spouse's ability to be self-sufficient, length of the marriage, accustomed lifestyle and many others.
Alimony is an important issue to many Los Angeles residents going through a divorce. It is important that each person understand the types of alimony and spousal support available and the facts that judges consider most when making their determinations. The assistance of an experienced family law attorney can help divorcing spouses navigate the legal system and focus on what is important in order to reach an agreeable settlement.
Source: Huffington Post, "Silvio Berlusconi To Pay $4 Million Per Month in Alimony," Dec. 28, 2012