Reimbursement alimony as the name suggests refers to alimony that an ex-spouse receives from the other for any expenses that the former may have paid on behalf of the latter.
Generally, this type of alimony arises in situations where the husband is still in school and the wife support him financially. In such cases, when they divorce after the husband gets his degree, the court can order the payment of reimbursement alimony by the husband to the wife. Generally as the time between the degree and the divorce increases, the chances of the court ordering payment of reimbursement alimony reduces. If the divorce occurs several years after the husband gets the degree, the court will is unlikely to order payment of reimbursement alimony. But the wife may receive a part of the value of the husband’s degree in the distribution of marital property. Professional practice like that of doctors, CPAs and attorneys are subject to such distribution.
The court can order the payment of reimbursement alimony as a lump sum payment but generally it is paid over a period of time.
Amy supports John during his medical school days for three years. A year after he receives his degree, they get divorced. In this case, the court is likely to order the payment of reimbursement alimony but the husband may get time until he starts his medical practice to pay her. In this instance, a lump sum payment may not work.
Reimbursement alimony is awarded as a reimbursement to the other spouse for the expenses incurred by him or her during the marriage. Often the court can order one spouse to pay reimbursement alimony to the other if the latter financially supported the former while the former was pursuing his education. The latter would have supported the former with the understanding that both of them would benefit once the former gets the degree. But when they divorce after the former gets the decree, the latter is no longer gets any benefit from the degree. In such cases, reimbursement alimony can provide some relief. <