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In a divorce, "unique circumstances" can have extraordinary power...

In many instances, courts have wide discretion in how New York Divorce laws are applied. This is especially true in assigning the amount of temporary support one spouse is to pay the other while the divorce is pending, and after it's finalized. You should make a point of telling your attorney about any relevant facts that would potentially affect the amount you should receive, or are able to pay. For example, if there is a wide divergence in income levels between you and your spouse, that's a significant factor. The age, health status, employment prospects and education of each party will also be taken into consideration by the courts, in addition to standard of living and children's needs. If you are to receive maintenance and cannot work due to one or more of these elements, you should give your lawyer a full briefing on your circumstances. Pull together a file of documents that prove your claim. On the other hand, if you're the one who must pay, and you believe that your partner is perfectly capable of self-support for reasons that may not be immediately apparent, say something. Let's say your spouse was a top sales professional at one time, or successfully self-employed in a service business that could be conducted from home. Even if he or she hasn't been employed for a number of years, it may be feasible to return to that work. This could potentially reduce the amount or duration of the maintenance you will have to pay. 

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