There are two types of spousal support in North Carolina: postseparation support (PSS) and alimony. In North Carolina, either spouse who can establish financial dependency may be entitled to spousal support. "Dependency" means he or she is substantially dependent on the other spouse to maintain the lifestyle he or she became accustomed to during the marriage, or is substantially in need of support.
If and when dependency is established, a person may be entitled to receive PSS or alimony. The amount, duration and manner of payment of support depend upon lots of factors, including, but not limited to, marital fault prior to the separation of the parties, the length of the marriage, and each party's earnings.
Parties may resolve issues of alimony or postseparation support in a valid premarital agreement before marriage or in a separation agreement following a separation. If a claim for PSS and/or alimony is not made prior to the granting of a final divorce, that claim is forfeited.