The person receiving spousal maintenance is receiving a benefit. Therefore, it is considered income and the spouse will have to report it as such for tax purposes. The spouse paying it gets a tax deduction. I recommend that you speak with a tax professional regarding such issues.
What if the ex-spouse is “ticked off” and refuses to pay you maintenance? The remedy here would be to file a contempt petition with the court alleging that the spouse has willfully disobeyed the court’s order. You must speak to an attorney about any contempt issues and be sure to ask for reimbursement of your attorney’s fees.