Everything you need to know about partner alimony in the Netherlands in 2021 from divorce and alimony expert Dylan Bertsch.
What is partner alimony?
Partner alimony (spousal support) is a contribution that one partner must pay to another after a divorce or termination of the registered partnership. This contribution is intended for the partner who does not have enough income to support himself or herself. Partner alimony is therefore only intended for the partner and not for children, relatives or friends.
Who has to pay partner alimony?
Normally, the partner who earns the most pays an amount to the partner who earns the least.
How is partner alimony calculated?
Partner alimony is calculated based on the need of the person claiming alimony (the maintenance creditor) and the financial ability to pay of the person who should pay alimony (the maintenance debtor).
Calculating partner alimony is specialist work. Knowledge of the law, case law and practical experience are essential for this.
How long does partner alimony last?
Since January 1, 2020, new rules apply to the duration of partner alimony. In this blog I therefore will only focus on these new rules.
The duration of partner alimony is equal to half the duration of the marriage or registered partnership, with a maximum of five years. So, if you have been married for eight years, for example, the duration of the partner alimony will be four years.
There are 3 exceptions to the new rules:
- If you have children together, partner alimony will not stop until the youngest child has turned 12.
- If the marriage or registered partnership lasted at least 15 years and if the maintenance creditor will reach AOW pension age within 10 years, then the partner alimony obligation lasts until the person entitled to receive alimony reaches AOW pension age.
- If the marriage or registered partnership lasted at least 15 years, and if the maintenance creditor is also born on or before 1 January 1970 and if the maintenance creditor will only reach AOW pension age in more than 10 years, then the duration of the partner alimony is 10 years.
In case of concurrence of the above circumstances, the longest term applies.
Can changes take place in the meantime?
An established partner alimony can be changed under certain circumstances. For example, if the family situation or the financial capacity of the maintenance debtor and/or the maintenance creditor changes, unless other agreements have been made about this. An amendment is also possible if the partner alimony has been determined on the basis of incorrect data.
Is partner alimony tax deductible?
Partner alimony is tax deductible for the person who pays it and is taxed for the person who receives it. In case of lump sum payment of partner alimony or when you live abroad, different rules may apply.
Note that if you do not owe income tax in the Netherlands then partner alimony is not always deductible.
Questions and further information
Dylan Bertsch is a specialist in family law, particularly partner and child maintenance. Diligent and outcome-focused, Dylan helps his clients through advice, mediation and representation in court.
Within family law, Dylan assists with complex divorces, prenuptial agreements, the division of commonly held property, first name changes and maintenance cases.