One of the most common questions we are asked in a Carlsbad or San Diego divorce case is: How long do I have to pay spousal support during and after a Carlsbad divorce? What is the difference between temporary and permanent spousal support orders?
Spousal support has been established by California Family Law Code to level the financial playing field between the parties in a divorce. It should provide resources to the party who earns significantly less than their former spouse while the recipient develops the ability to be self-sustaining.
There are two types of spousal support associated with a Carlsbad divorce: Temporary and Permanent. Temporary spousal support orders provide a lesser earning spouse the financial resources to manage expenses during the process of the divorce. Permanent spousal support orders are issued during the finalization of the divorce process and govern support after the divorce has been completed.
How long do I have to pay spousal support and what determines the amount I have to pay?
It is important to note spousal support is rarely meant to be last until the recipient remarries or passes away. Consider it more as a support structure which helps for the recipient to become self-sufficient. The Judge will usually specify a time frame for the recipient to find work, increase their skill set and ultimately earn enough to provide for themselves.
The amount you have to pay is based upon a substantial number of factors. The primary factors include your ability to pay, the financial needs of the recipient, the duration of your marriage, the ability of each party to earn a living as well your health and age.
The time frame of spousal support is generally half the length of a marriage which lasted less than 10 years. If the marriage lasted longer than 10 years the Judge will have to consider a much more comprehensive group of factors before issuing spousal support orders.
Spousal support may be negotiated or settled in mediation. However, the Judge must review any agreement reached by the parties and either approve it or suggest modifications.
Spousal support may be increased or decreased along the way based upon the income, health and financial needs of each party.
How long do I have to pay spousal support and what determines the amount I have to pay? There is no specific formula for spousal support and the quality of your attorney will have a significant impact on the outcome in your case. You need the insight, guidance and representation of the proven Certified Family Law Specialists at Burke & Domercq.