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Richard Novitch comments on SJC’s alimony ruling

Richard M. Novitch offered insights in a news article concerning a recent Supreme Judicial Court ruling that setting an alimony amount may also include consideration of a divorcing couple’s marital habit of allocating a sizable portion of income as savings.

The court ruled that under the state’s alimony statute, it’s appropriate for a judge to account for a divorcing couple’s custom of making regular contributions to their savings plans in assessing their standard of living and determining the amount of alimony needed to maintain the marital lifestyle.

In a Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly news article, Mr. Novitch observed that the practical effect of the decision will be to extend the duration of alimony past the durational limits of the Alimony Reform Act.

He also noted that by incorporating savings into the calculation of alimony, the recipient spouse in the case before the SJC received the equivalent of a couple of extra years’ worth of alimony.

A partner at the firm, Mr. Novitch's practice includes a wide range of family law matters, as well as considerable appellate experience.

The SJC case is Openshaw v. Openshaw.