What is the difference between spousal support and alimony pendente lite?
Before a divorce complaint is filed, and provided the parties are living separately, support for the spouse who earns less is called spousal support and may be subject to what is known as an entitlement defense. That is, if fault grounds are present, the party being asked to pay spousal support may raise the issue of fault grounds, which may bar the receiving spouse from being awarded spousal support. Once a divorce complaint is filed, however, the support is calculated the same way as spousal support but is known as alimony pendente lite, or APL, and the entitlement defense is no longer available to the payor spouse. Both kinds of support are calculated using the parties' monthly net incomes according to state guidelines.