Idaho Alimony Laws and Guidelines: All About Spousal Support in “ID”

The alimony laws governing spousal support in Idaho is different from what is obtainable in other states. Read further to grasp the peculiarity of the ID alimony law.

All 50 states in America are alimony states, meaning states that have enacted laws permitting a spouse who cannot work full time or with a lower income to request payments from the other spouse to support themselves after a divorce.

What is Alimony?

Also referred to as “spousal support” or “spousal maintenance” in Gem State, alimony is the series of payments made by one spouse (the payor spouse) to another (the supported or payee spouse) after the divorce.

Before the alimony payments commence, there has to be a written order or agreement which requires the payor to support the payee with a stipulated amount of money.

This agreement eliminates any disputes in the future about why the payment was made or when it’s not made.

Type of Alimony Laws Practiced in ID

types of alimony

Types of alimony in Idaho

Idaho courts can order temporary, fixed-duration, or permanent child support. A judge must first determine that the requesting spouse requires support and that the other spouse is able to pay before determining what type of assistance is suitable.

Temporary Spousal Support in Idaho

The divorce process is time-consuming, and some couples require assistance in meeting financial commitments while the divorce is pending, such as paying a second rent or mortgage payment or paying bills that were previously paid by the other spouse.

For spouses who are unable to sustain themselves throughout the divorce, temporary support (also known as “pendente lite”) is offered. When the divorce is finalized or new support order is created, pendente lite support comes to an end. The judge will determine when interim support will terminate.

Fixed-duration (Rehabilitative) Support in ID

A fixed-duration or rehabilitative award is the most prevalent type of support in Idaho. In many circumstances, the lower-earning spouse can become self-sustaining, but he or she will require time and financial assistance in finding a suitable job.

While the assisted spouse goes to school or certification that will lead to stable employment and financial autonomy, the court will appropriate rehabilitative support.

Before deciding on the length of support, judges may request the supported spouse to present a rehabilitation plan. The judge will normally establish an end date for maintenance (a deadline for finishing training or schooling) or the date on which the parties will return to court for a reassessment, similar to temporary support.

Permanent Support in Idaho

Permanent support is uncommon, but it is accessible to spouses who are not able to work because of old age or a physical or mental condition. When the supported spouse remarries, dies, or otherwise qualifies for a modification, permanent support usually stops.

Who Pays Alimony in Idaho?

In Idaho alimony law, the spouse that makes most of the money will share that income with the other spouse. The idea behind who pays for alimony is to considerably level up the living standard of the dependent spouse to what it was while the marriage was on.

Regarding the sex that pays, alimony in Gem State is gender-neutral, meaning either spouse can request support from the other. As long as the alimony can be provided to the requesting spouse, then it will most likely be granted. (Idaho Code § 32-705 (a) (b))

So a husband can receive alimony from a wife in Idaho if the above conditions are met.

Idaho law requires that all payments be made through the Department of Health and Welfare unless the spouses agree otherwise. The Department of Health and Welfare will inform the supported spouse and provide payment after receiving the payment. (Idaho Code § 32-710A)

How Long Does Spousal Support Last in ID?

How Long To Pay Alimony

The judge will decide how long the alimony payment should last in Idaho

The duration to pay alimony in Idaho can differ depending on the individual judge and circumstances. However, you should expect to pay spousal support for a duration of 80-70% of the length of the marriage lasted. So assuming you were married for 10 years, the spousal support duration will most likely be between 6 to 7 years.

As provided by the alimony laws of ID, rehabilitative and permanent support stops if either spouse dies or the supported spouse remarries.

How to Collect Spousal Support Arrears in Idaho

When it comes to collecting spousal support in Idaho, you have a few choices if your ex-spouse has failed to make alimony payments as ordered by the court. Debts for spousal support are frequently given priority among debtors under US law.

Factors That Influence Alimony in Idaho

In the Idaho divorce statutes, the average amount payable as spousal support in Idaho after divorce is determined by various factors. But the major factor you have to understand is “the standard of living of the marriage.”

To determine the final amounts for rehabilitative and permanent support in ID, the courts in ID take into consideration the income of the spouses, plus other factors like:

  • earning capacity of each spouse.
  • the ability of the paying spouse to pay, considering assets, the standard of living, earning capacity, as well as earned and unearned income.
  • the extent of contribution the supported spouse gave to the other’s educational pursuit or professional license during the marriage
  • how long the marriage lasted
  • the needs of each spouse
  • the assets and debts of each spouse including separate property
  • each party’s tax consequences
  • the ability of the supported spouse to gain employment without interfering with their children’s care
  • each spouse’s health and age
  • each party’s balance of hardships
  • whether there is a documented history of domestic violence against the children or either party
  • will the dependent spouse be self-supporting within a reasonable period
  • any criminal conviction of an abusive spouse
  • any other factors which the court wishes to consider

This is the main measure the court uses to determine the amount to be paid in Gem State. The principle behind the standard of living of the marriage is that after the marriage breakup, both spouses should continue living within the same standard they lived while the marriage lasted.

How Alimony is Calculated in ID

How Alimony is Calculated

How Alimony is Calculated in Idaho

The amount to be paid as spousal support in Idaho is calculated after considering the above-stated factors. Whichever option is adopted it is reflected in the Alimony Calculator

But to be explicit about how to calculate spousal support in ID, you may need to consult your spousal support attorney.

>>> Idaho Spousal Support Calculator

Importance of Using a Skilled Idaho Spousal Support Attorney

If you’re getting a divorce in Idaho and need to negotiate or re-negotiate spousal support, you’ve definitely got a lot of questions and want to seek competent legal guidance. Though state Supreme Courts have supported lifetime spousal support, your circumstances may or may not fulfill the requirements. ID courts may judge your case differently based on the merits of you and your previous spouse. There are so many variables to consider.

If you want to get spousal support for the rest of your life or if you want to fight against it in Idaho, an expert divorce lawyer can help. Depending on the objective and the desire of the adversary attorney to bargain in good faith, you’ll need attorneys that are
both empathetic and strong.

For the convenience of our members, we have an up-to-date directory of ID divorce and spousal support attorneys who can help with a variety of issues. For legal advice and
representation on spousal support that is powerful and well-informed.

Click Here to Get our Free Iowa Alimony recommendation.

FAQ About Idaho Alimony Laws

Here are Frequently Asked Questions about spousal support laws in ID:

Can a Husband get Alimony in ID?

Yes. In Idaho, alimony payment is gender-neutral, meaning the sex that pays or receives is not the main determinant, but other factors as stated above. For details click here.

Who Qualifies for Alimony in Idaho?

Just as either spouse can pay or receive, the party that qualifies to receive spousal support is the dependent party while the marriage lasted. This means that in ID, the spouse that had lesser or no income when the marriage was on is also the one qualified to receive alimony. Click here for details

How Long do you have to be Married to get Alimony in ID?

To understand how long alimony lasts in Idaho, you have to take into consideration how long the marriage lasted.

However, bear in mind that there is no limit to the duration you can pay or receive alimony for marriages that lasted 10-20 years or more. Any marriage that lasted below 20 years will not pay nor receive alimony that exceeds 50% of the duration of the marriage.

Is Alimony Tax Deductible in Idaho?

Following the passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which altered the link between alimony and taxes dramatically in Idaho and all over the US, alimony payments are no longer tax deductible for the payer and are no longer recognized as income for the recipient spouse as of January 1, 2019.

Is Alimony Mandatory in Gem State?

Alimony is mandatory in Idaho as long as one of the spouses earns or owns assets that can be relied upon to support the other spouse after the marriage breaks down.

Can Alimony be increased in Idaho?

Alimony amount or duration can be increased or decreased due to changes in the financial circumstances of the parties in different ways, including:

  • an increase or decrease in the income of the alimony recipient
  • if it’s determined that the original alimony awarded is inadequate
  •  loss to the alimony recipient’s financial assets
  • an increase in the justified expenses of the alimony recipient
  • when the financial condition of the receiving spouse fails to improve as originally expected

Can you go to Jail for Not Paying Spousal Support in ID?

Technically, you will not be jailed for not paying alimony in Idaho. While there are varying consequences for not paying alimony, you can still end up in jail as a result. Here is how.

If it’s an Idaho court-ordered spousal support that you refuse to pay, it means you are in violation of a court order meaning you can be prosecuted for being in contempt of court if contempt proceedings are brought up against you. This could attract a jail term in ID}.

How to Modify Spousal Support in Idaho

How to Avoid spousal support

How to Avoid spousal support in Idaho

When necessary, Idaho law allows for a spousal support modification. If the asking spouse can establish a significant and meaningful change of circumstances since the last judgment, Idaho law enables any spouse to request a modification of spousal support. The court would deny the request for review if the spouses consented in writing that the order would be non-modifiable. (Idaho Code § 32-709 (1).)

A brief problem is unlikely to be significant enough to warrant a revision in the initial alimony ruling. Likewise, dissatisfaction with the support order is not a valid reason for a revision in ID.

The following are some of the most common reasons for requesting an alimony modification in ID:

  • Retirement
  • Remarriage
  • Relocation
  • Changes in income or employment
  • Birth of a new child
  • Health changes, including disability
  • A new dependent

How to Avoid or End Spousal Support in ID

In Gem State, the spouse paying the alimony can successfully avoid or stop the alimony payment if he/she is able to prove any or all of the following points:

  • that the dependent spouse is guilty of infidelity
  • the spouse proves that he has no source of income
  • the spouse remarries and has to take care of the new spouse however, he/she will continue paying the child support for children if any
  • if the spouse is disabled and unable to earn a living

Idaho Resource

- Idaho Child Adoption Guidelines
- Idaho Childcare Guidelines
- Idaho Child Custody and Visitation Guidelines
- Idaho Child Support Guidelines
- Idaho Divorce Guidelines
- Idaho Marital Property Guidelines
- Idaho Spousal Support Guidelines
- How to Check Idaho Child Support Payment History

Alimony Laws in all 50 States

A Alabama  |  AlaskaArizonaArkansas
C CaliforniaColoradoConnecticut
D-H DelawareFloridaGeorgiaHawaii
I IdahoIllinoisIndianaIowa
K-L KansasKentuckyLouisiana
M MaineMarylandMassachusettsMichiganMinnesotaMississippiMissouriMontana
NebraskaNevadaNew HampshireNew JerseyNew MexicoNew YorkNorth CarolinaNorth Dakota
P-S  PennsylvaniaRhode IslandSouth CarolinaSouth Dakota
T-U  TennesseeTexasUtah
V-W  VermontVirginiaWashingtonWest VirginiaWisconsinWyoming

Deborah Kelly

Deborah Kelly

As a proud single mom who has seen it all, I encourage others by sharing my experiences & curating content on divorce, adoption, child & spousal support. My passion also includes spending quality time with my kids and giving back to my community.