Winning Maintenance Claims
Getting divorce is always hard – it can be emotionally traumatic to both spouses, and even to children.
However, even though you can be stressed and emotionally devastated, you should do your best to win a maintenance claim – either because you need financial aid to support a child or because you feel the amount you have to pay is unfair. Winning or losing a maintenance claim will have a large impact on your subsequent life.
To win a maintenance claim successfully, you must know a number of basic things.
Who can apply for maintenance?
In most cases, a person having custody of children can apply for maintenance. However, a maintenance claim may result in the court declaring that not one, but both parents must pay maintenance for a child. The maintenance will be paid to the parent having custody of children.
A maintenance claim can also be made by an ex-wife, and – this part may sound strange – a wife can go for maintenance even if she isn’t divorced. If a husband refuses to provide his wife with an adequate maintenance that is a sufficient reason to go to the court . However, winning a maintenance claim in this case might require solid and consistent evidence – evidence which is best gathered not by an unprepared person, but by professional private investigators.
Child Maintenance Claims
If you file a child maintenance claim, period and order of maintenance will be decided by the court. However, these factors can be subsequently changed by filing a maintenance readjustment claim.
Amount of maintenance
Amount of maintenance is determined in accordance with basic needs of a child, like lodging expenses, education expenses and food expenses. Physical and mental chronic disease or disabilities, or a need for special treatment for a child, will increase the amount of maintenance.
If some of the factors of the maintenance claim has changed – for instance, lodging expenses has gone up – you can file a maintenance readjustment claim to increase the amount of maintenance accordingly.
Period of maintenance
A typical maintenance period lasts until the child is financially independent or until he reaches his 21st birthday. Maintenance, however, can be fixed for a specific period. For instance, if the child is disabled, the maintenance might last until he recovers from the disability, or as the court decides while considering a particular maintenance claim. Some other factors can influence a period of maintenance, like the length of training period. Depending on outcomes of your maintenance claim, the child can receive maintenance even after his 21st birthday.
Filing a maintenance readjustment claim
If sufficient changes had happened since you filed your first maintenance claim, you can make a readjustment claim to change or to cancel the maintenance. Usually an increase of the salary of a paying parent or an illness of the receiving parent or a child means an increase of maintenance claim. Conversely, marriage or cohabitation of the parent receiving maintenance or an illness of a paying parent call for a decrease or cancellation of maintenance. In these cases, evidence might be needed to prove that cohabitation or an increase in income indeed takes place. It’s generally better to hire private investigators to get such a proof, as they will find the required evidence quickly and discreetly.
Wife or ex-wife maintenance claims
A wife can get maintenance either if she has obtained a divorce or if her husband has not provided her with an adequate financial support. However, private investigators’ assistance can be nesessary to get proof of the latter. It is also important not to wait while filing a maintenance claim – if you has not applied t apply for maintenance during divorce suit, you may not apply for it later.
Amount of maintenance
Amount of maintenance depends on many factors. Most important of them are:
• Your and your husband’s age
• Your and your husband’s standard of living
• Duration of your marriage
• You and your husband’s financial capacity
Generally the court will try to make sure the maintenance is enough to provide you with the standard of living you have had while married.
Period of maintenance
In most of the cases, while processing a maintenance claim, the court decrees that a wife will be receiving maintenance either until she marries or until she or her husband dies.
Maintenance readjustment claim
If certain factors – such as income of any of the sides, or their health – changed significantly, one of the ex-spouses may file a readjustment of maintenance claim. The court will decide if there are enough grounds to decrease, increase or cancel the maintenance. However, solid proof of the changes will be required.
Overall winning a maintenance claim is a process for which it’s not hard to find a good lawyer. However, in some cases a lawyer is not enough to win a maintenance claim – he can only make the best with evidence he has. If you need additional evidence, the best decision would be to hire a private investigator. He will provide you with solid evidence needed to win the maintenance claim.
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