New law ends most 'lifetime' alimony in Mass.
BOSTON—Sweeping changes in alimony rules are taking hold in Massachusetts.
A law approved by the Legislature and signed by Gov. Deval Patrick last fall became effective on Thursday.
The new law establishes guidelines for alimony payments and limits the duration of payments, ending the so-called "lifetime alimony" ordered by some judges in divorce cases.
One of the biggest changes in the bill would set limits on how long a spouse can receive alimony, based on how long the couple was married.
The state's previous alimony laws did not set any duration limits.
Supporters of the changes say the new guidelines will help judges make fair decisions about alimony.