Michigan Child Support Calculator

A legal advocacy project of Michelle Steffen, Attorney.

Spousal Support (Alimony)

In Michigan, alimony is called spousal support.

 

There is no Michigan law for formulaic spousal support calculation. Let me repeat: THERE IS NO MICHIGAN LAW FOR FORMULAIC SPOUSAL SUPPORT CALCULATIONS.

 

In Michigan law, spousal support is based on the following factors:

 

The relationship and conduct of the individuals.
How long the marriage was.
Whether either person can work, and how much.
What marital assets were given to whom.
Individuals' ages.
Ability to pay.
The present situation.
Needs of either person.
Health of either person.
Standard of living during and after marriage and whether either person supports others.
General principals of fairness.

 

Spousal support in Michigan is not determined by formula. It's not like child support, where you answer some questions and it gives you a specific number. With spousal support, Michigan law does not dictate how much to weigh each factor, like the Michigan child support guidelines do. Michigan law only provides the above list of factors to consider. Spousal support is an art, not a science.

 

Alimony calculators currently available are not based on any formula that a state agency or state governing body adopted. What calculators exist are only based on formulas the developer thought was fair. These calculators were developed many years ago. Lifestyles, opportunities, and equality has changed a great deal since then.

 

If you are an attorney or mediator that uses an alimony calculator, you may want to reconsider this practice. If your attorney tries to suggest an alimony calculator, or suggest that you make any decisions based on one, tell them it's not law. Spousal support is an individual, fact-specific determination. Until Michigan formally adopts a formulaic structure to spousal support, insist on an individual determination for yourself or your clients.

 

I do not offer a spousal support calculator because I cannot in good conscience give you a spousal support calculator that is not based in Michigan law and should not be used.