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Am I Entitled to Spousal Support?

Family Law - Spousal Support.jpgWhen a marriage or domestic partnership is being dissolved, the issue of spousal support or alimony is often a primary concern of the parties. In part, this is because marriage involves mutual obligations of respect, fidelity and support and this continues even through the dissolution process. The experienced family law attorneys at Santa Rosa Attorney will assist you in this very important determination, regardless of whether you are the spouse entitled to receive temporary spousal support or the party that may have the obligation to pay
Temporary Spousal Support

During the dissolution process a spouse may have the right to receive temporary spousal for the purpose of assisting that spouse balance their financial obligations. Often times, it is very important to obtaining a temporary spousal support order immediately so as to secure financial security to a spouse who was dependent on the income of the other party. In the situation of temporary spousal support its calculation is generally based upon the needs of the supported party and the ability of the supporting party to pay. Prior to a judgment for dissolution, temporary spousal support is calculated much like child support and uses a judicially recognized “guideline” calculated by a program.

How is Temporary Spousal Support Calculated?

To calculate temporary spousal support, the experienced attorneys at Beck Law, will determine the relative income of each party and calculate what guideline temporary spousal support may be. This is a complex process, which involves many specific calculations and consideration of applicable deductions and allocation of expenses between the parties. If not performed correctly, the calculation may result in a spouse receiving far less than what they may be entitled to receive or paying far more than they should.

Permanent Spousal Support

Permanent spousal support, or support that may be ordered after a judgment for dissolution has been entered, is calculated by a careful consideration of a long list of factors under Family Code section 4320. In particular these include the respective incomes of each spouse, the length of the marriage, ability of a party to pay, the standard of living during the marriage, the assets and debts of each party and whether there has been any domestic violence. Permanent spousal support is generally payable for duration of half the length of the marriage, except in cases of a marriage of a long duration, or over 10 years, where the court may reserve jurisdiction over the termination of spousal support.

How is Permanent Spousal Support Calculated?

When calculating permanent spousal support it is important to evaluate the specific factors of the Family Code and also to consider the unique facts applicable to your case. For example, will the supported spouse require any retraining or education, did the parties pay for one spouse to go to school and obtain additional professional skills, did the supported spouse previously have job skills and is that supported spousal maximizing their earning potential. When you are going through a dissolution that involves spousal support and permanent spousal support in particular it is important to have an experienced family law attorney because a negative result may not be modifiable and financially impact you for many years to come.


The family law attorneys at Beck Law P.C. can make this process as easy as possible and acknowledges all the difficulties that may accompany you throughout this new transition in your life.

Making an appointment to meet with us is not a decision to file for divorce and spousal support. It is merely an investment in exploring what options may or may not apply to your particular situation. Your visit to the Beck Law Offices is confidential, as is the information discussed. You can contact our office at 707-576-7175 or contact us online.

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