Definition of alimony in English:



North American
  • [mass noun] A husband's (or wife's) provision for a spouse after separation or divorce; maintenance.

    ‘he is said to have paid $300,000 alimony to his first wife’
    • ‘When a divorce lands in court, children should be insulated as much as possible from adult decisions like alimony and support payments.’
    • ‘However, by doing so she loses the right to maintenance or alimony which a divorced woman can claim legally.’
    • ‘No, your son will not be required to pay alimony when his wife files for divorce.’
    • ‘The Palestine Order of Council defined matters of personal status to include such matters as marriage, divorce, alimony, maintenance, guardianship, successions, wills.’
    • ‘Their husbands refuse to pay alimony or child support.’
    • ‘In this case, as it appears that there is a substantial question of domicile to be decided, and as it cannot be determined for several months, the wife is entitled to alimony.’
    • ‘Certain debts such as back taxes, student loans, alimony, and child support cannot be discharged.’
    • ‘From Elias Hall's point of view, his wife's ability to obtain a divorce and alimony threatened his authority as a husband and his independent manhood.’
    • ‘However, the ecclesiastical courts could order a husband to pay alimony to a wife seeking a separation from him.’
    • ‘And the law takes a dim view of marital partners attempting to change how the marriage, divorce, and alimony laws will apply to them once they are already married.’
    • ‘Include any bonuses, tips, commissions, alimony, child support, dividends, interest earnings, and government benefits.’
    • ‘If she was getting tired of his extracurricular activities and the thought of divorce was entering her mind, doesn't California have alimony and child support?’
    • ‘Alimony, including back alimony, is deductible in the year in which it's paid.’
    • ‘Current wages are also protected, unless a court has ordered you to make payments for child support, alimony or other support or maintenance.’
    • ‘‘These courts protected women's rights to divorce, alimony, child custody and child support,’ she says.’
    • ‘This bill is about people using the bankruptcy system to evade paying alimony and child support payments.’
    • ‘Her suffering is increased when she discovers that she'll have to pay alimony to her absent husband, who's been having an affair behind her back.’
    • ‘Today the doors of the civil courts are open for us in issues of custody, alimony, maintenance, guardianship and shared property.’
    • ‘His parents were divorced and his family lived off of alimony and child support.’
    • ‘In other words, if one of Susie's great-grandparents were black, Frank would be entitled to an annulment and relieved of his obligations to provide alimony or child support.’
    financial support, maintenance, support, provision, allowance, keep, upkeep, sustenance, livelihood, subsistence, living expenses
    child support
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Early 17th century (in the sense ‘nourishment, means of subsistence’): from Latin alimonia nutriment, from alere nourish.