Spousal support, or alimony is a means of support ordered by the family court in which one party must make monthly payments to their former spouse or partner. The family court will consider one party’s request to receive spousal support in the event of divorce, legal separation, annulment, or a restraining order for domestic violence. The support can be temporary, which will be paid while the case is ongoing, or permanent, which is ordered as part of the final judgment and will be paid long-term. In many situations, one partner will seek support as part of the final judgment, and it is solely the judge’s discretion whether or not spousal support should be awarded.
The judge will not use a formula to decide whether support should be ordered and how much should be awarded; rather, the judge will consider the factors included in California Family Code section 4320:
Earning capacity is often a key part of the judge’s decision, as it significantly impacts the parties’ abilities to retain the same standard of living they had during the union. In order to determine the earning capacity of the party seeking support, the judge will assess the following:
If you are seeking support from your spouse or if the judge is considering whether you should be ordered to make support payments, it is important to ensure your rights and interests are protected. Do not hesitate to enlist the powerful advocacy of my firm for your legal proceedings.
Can spousal support be changed?
In some situations, one party may seek to have the support order modified for one reason or another. The court will consider modification of the order if the requesting party has experienced a change in circumstances. This means there has been a significant change since the order was originally made, and could include a number of factors, including:
Spousal support is not always permanent and it can end because of a court decision to terminate the order, one party dies, or because the supported party enters a new marriage or domestic partnership. If you are facing the modification process, my firm can protect your rights and provide you with a strong voice before the family judge.
Choose Unique and Experienced Representation
Alimony and spousal support can be complex matters that must be approached sensitively. Important matters needing address are the size and source of family income at the time of separation and divorce, the balance of past financial contributions of each spouse and the potential education, training and other support that might be needed by a spouse who could suddenly be faced with the prospect of having to enter a job or career market. I bring a broad, focused and unique lifetime of legal experience to your alimony and other spousal support needs:
Contact the office of Gordon G. Meyer, a Certified Family Law Specialist, who has 43 years of experience in Family Law and Child Custody cases. Call 619-855-4070 for an appointment today.
Serving the communities of Poway, Rancho Penasquitos, Rancho Bernardo, 4S Ranch, Escondido and North San Diego county.