How long does alimony have to be paid Singapore?
The short answer is- alimony has to be paid for life or until the ex-wife remarries.
However, not all ex-wives will receive alimony in Singapore.
The payment of alimony (and the quantum) depends on factors such as:
- The income and financial resources of the parties;
- The standard of living enjoyed by the ex-wife before the divorce;
- The age of the parties; and
- The parties’ contributions to the family.
Parties may also apply to vary any maintenance orders in the future should there be material change in circumstances.
Case of Yan Assoun
Yan Assoun is a banker who earns at least $1 million a year. In 2013, he was order by the English courts to pay $380,000 a year. This was nearly 3 times the $132,000 a year that he was previously paying.
Assoun appealed. In a subsequent hearing, he represented himself without a lawyer, claiming that he could not afford a lawyer despite living in a #3.3 million New York apartment.
In his latest appeal, Assoun informed the Court of Appeal that he did not have the ability to pay his ex-wife.
The Court of Appeal did not buy Assoun’s story and upheld a “Hadkinson order” against him, barring him from taking new cases before the English courts before he made payment to his ex-wife.
See: Jane Croft, “Court orders millionaire banker to pay overdue divorce payments”, Financial Times, 28 March 2017
It is unclear what the result in Assoun’s case would have been in Singapore, given that the article did not mention Assoun’s ex-wife’s income/ financial resources, their previous standard of living and respective contributions to the family. However, similar to the Singapore’s context, the husband’s financial resources do have a big part to play in the determination of alimony in Singapore.
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