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What You Need to Know About Spousal Support in California

What You Need to Know About Spousal Support in California

California often orders one spouse to pay the other a certain amount for support money each month after a divorce. If you’re getting divorced, you probably have countless questions about spousal support and how it will affect you in the future. The Pasadena family law attorneys at Law Offices of Donald P. Schweitzer has put together the most important information you should know about spousal support.

How to Ask for Spousal Support

If you’re getting divorced and you need help going through the transition of separation, you can ask the judge to make a spousal support order. You can request a spousal support order for a divorce, legal separation, or annulment. You can also ask for spousal support during the divorce process. This is called “temporary spousal support order.”

How Is Spousal Support Calculated?

Most California courts use a formula to determine the amount of temporary spousal support that has to be paid. However, the court will analyze the specific details of the case to determine the final spousal support amount.

California courts consider the following to calculate spousal support:

  • The length of the marriage
  • Debts and assets
  • Each spouse’s needs and standard of living
  • What each spouse is able to pay
  • Whether having a job would make it hard to take care of their child
  • The age and health conditions of both spouses
  • Whether one of the partners helped the other get an education or professional training
  • Whether there was domestic violence in the marriage
  • The tax impact of spousal support

Earning Capacity & Standard of Living

A judge will take a close look at how much each spouse can earn to keep the same standard of living they had during the marriage. The judge will then analyze how marketable the spouse is and what job opportunities there are for their skill set. They will also determine the time and expense it will take for the spouse to get a job.

Length in Marriage

The length that a person has to pay for spousal support is heavily based on the length of the marriage. In most cases, the time period ordered to pay spousal support will be the one-half length of the marriage. However, if the marriage was longer than 10- years, the court might not set an end date to the spousal support.

How to Create a Spousal Support Agreement

It is possible for spouses to work together to create a spousal support agreement. In order to create a spousal support agreement, the couple must create and sign a written agreement or stipulation without having to go in front of a judge. This is beneficial for spouses who don’t want a judge to decide for them and want to work on the agreement together. However, the court will have to accept and sign your agreement for it to be official.

You have to follow these steps to create a spousal support agreement:

  1. Decide on the amount and duration of the spousal support
  2. Write up your agreement. You can attach your agreement to the FL-343 form.
  3. Sign your agreement
  4. Turn in your agreement to the court for the judge to sign
  5. File your agreement/stipulation after the judge signs it

Call Our Pasadena Family Law Attorneys!

While going through a divorce and the determination of spousal support, it’s vital to have an experienced spousal support attorney on your side. Our legal team at Law Offices of Donald P. Schweitzer has years of experience helping families with their litigation issues. We have a team of experts and highly experienced attorneys who are ready to handle your case and help you from beginning to end. Our full-service approach lets us provide you with expert advice while developing a strategy that will help you obtain your desired outcome.

Give our Pasadena spousal support attorneys a call today at (626) 788-5225 to schedule a consultation!

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