When Is Spousal Support Ordered in California?

When Is Spousal Support Ordered in California?

Date: Feb 16, 2023
In: Divorce

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When Is Spousal Support Ordered in California?

Spousal support, or alimony, is not appropriate in every divorce, but if you are entitled to spousal support or are responsible for paying spousal support, it is important to understand the basics as they apply to your situation. If you have questions or concerns about spousal support, you need the professional legal guidance of a dedicated California divorce attorney with extensive experience successfully handling complex spousal support cases. 

Spousal Support

Alimony refers to payments made by one spouse to the other when the divorce process or the divorce itself leaves the recipient unable to continue supporting themself – while the payor has the means to help. Spousal support breaks down into two primary forms that include the following:

  • Temporary alimony, which is paid while the divorce is pending 
  • Permanent alimony, which refers to support that is paid post-divorce and is generally paid for a set duration 

Permanent alimony, in other words, may not actually be permanent – although alimony is sometimes set without an end date. 

The Factors that Affect Alimony

The alimony orders received upon divorce are based on a range of factors that include:

  • The duration of your marriage
  • The overall mental and physical health of you and your spouse 
  • The standard of living achieved during the marriage and the means necessary to maintain it
  • Each spouse’s earning capacity
  • Any contributions the recipient made in relation to the payor’s education or career, such as working to put the other through graduate school
  • Each spouse’s separate assets
  • How minor children are affected financially by the divorce
  • Any documented domestic violence
  • The tax implications of the proposed divorce terms for each of you
  • The resulting hardships experienced by either of you
  • For short-term marriages – generally, those that lasted less than ten years – the length of time the recipient will likely need to become self-supporting.
  • Any other considerations the court determines are relevant in your unique case.

The Purpose behind Spousal Support

Temporary spousal support is intended to help the recipient maintain their current standard of living until the divorce is finalized and the division of marital property and permanent spousal support is determined. Permanent spousal support, on the other hand, helps to ensure that the recipient is able to continue supporting themself – generally while gaining the education, job training, or job skills necessary to become more financially independent. 

Seek the Skilled Legal Guidance of an Experienced California Divorce Attorney Today

Alimony can play an important role in your divorce terms, but receiving less than the amount to which you are entitled or paying more than you are obligated to pay can amount to a serious financial burden. 

The skilled divorce attorneys at Miranda, Magden & Miranda, LLP – serving both the Monterey and Salinas areas – have an impressive track record of successfully guiding complicated spousal support cases toward advantageous outcomes that support our client’s rights and best interests, and we are here for you, too. Learn more about what we can do to help you by reaching out and contacting us today.

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