Articles Posted in Spousal Support

Many married couples share finances, despite the fact that they have disparate incomes in 2023. If a couple with unbalanced incomes decides to divorce, however, it may leave one spouse without sufficient means to support themselves. Given the high costs of housing in San Diego County, may couples are having difficulty affording to live in San Diego even with two incomes.  When the spouses separate, this means two housing expenses and other expenses not incurred when cohabitating.  In such instances, the Courts may find it appropriate to grant spousal support. In a recent California case, the Court discussed the factors considered in determining whether to grant support. If you intend to end your marriage, it is wise to talk to a San Diego divorce attorney about your options. This can be an extremely contentious area in a family law case!

History of the Case

It is reported that in 2015 the husband and wife separated after more than 20 years of marriage. The husband initially agreed to pay spousal and child support, as the wife was unemployed and he owned an electrical business. In 2019, the husband retired and requested a modification of spousal support. The Court reduced the temporary support obligation to zero but stated that it could be reinstated if the wife’s counsel discovered the husband’s ability to pay.

The dissolution matter went to trial to resolve the issues of spousal support and the division of assets. A forensic accountant testified on behalf of the wife, providing an analysis of the husband’s income available for support in the years 2016-2019. The trial Court denied the wife permanent spousal support but granted her temporary support for a specific period. The husband filed objections to the Trial Court’s rulings, but the Trial Court declined to address them. The wife submitted a proposed judgment, which the Trial Court signed. The husband appealed the decision. Continue reading

It is not uncommon in divorce actions for one party to possess greater means than the other. While any marital property is subject to division upon divorce, while the divorce is pending, the lesser-monied spouse may suffer economic hardships. Thus, it is within the Court’s discretion to grant temporary spousal support in cases in which it believes such support is warranted. Recently, a California Court examined when temporary spousal support is appropriate in a matter in which it rejected the husband’s assertion that it was not necessary due to the parties’ lengthy separation during the pendency of the divorce. If you want to learn more about your rights with regard to spousal support, it is advisable to meet with a San Diego spousal support attorney promptly.

Background of the Case

It is reported that the husband and wife married in 1984 and separated in 2010. The husband filed a petition for dissolution later that year. They have two adult children. Following their separation, the wife moved to Texas to live with her parents. The wife worked as a probation officer from 1998 to 2003, after which she was a stay-at-home mother. She worked as a teacher’s aide in Texas.

It is alleged that the husband works as a property assessor, a position he has held since 1986. In early 2021, the wife filed a request for an order seeking temporary spousal support and attorneys’ fees. The husband opposed the request, arguing he should not be responsible for her support. The Trial Court ordered the husband to pay approximately $2,100 per month in temporary spousal support, and the husband appealed. Continue reading

It is not uncommon for one spouse to work outside of the home while the other raises the couple’s children and takes care of household concerns. If a one-income couple decides to end their marriage, the spouse, without an income, may suffer financial hardships while the divorce is pending. In such instances, the Courts will often enter orders granting temporary spousal support. As explained in a recent California ruling issued in a divorce case, there are no clear statutory standards governing temporary support calculations, and such calculations will not be disturbed absent an abuse of discretion. If you want to learn more about temporary spousal support obligations in the context of divorce, it is in your best interest to meet with a skilled San Diego divorce attorney as soon as possible.

The Factual and Procedural History of the Case

It is reported that the parties married in 1993 and separated in 2021. The husband filed a petition for dissolution in March 2021. Both parties worked as attorneys at the beginning of the marriage, but in 2003, the wife left the law practice to stay at home full-time. The husband worked for the United States Department of State and was regularly assigned to diplomatic positions abroad. When working in such positions, he was provided housing by the Department of State.

Allegedly, in July 2021, the wife moved for temporary spousal support in excess of the statutory guidelines. In support of her request, she asserted that the value of the husband’s housing should be imputed to him as income. The Court ordered the husband to pay temporary spousal support but declined to grant the wife’s request for enhanced support. The wife appealed.

Continue reading

California law permits people to seek spousal support in divorce actions. Regardless of whether spousal support is sought in the context of a divorce action or legal separation action such support will only be granted if the Court finds there is a valid marriage between the requesting party and their purported spouse. This was demonstrated recently in a California case in which the Court denied a woman’s request for spousal support on the grounds that her marriage was void. If you have questions with regard to your right to spousal support, you should contact a San Diego spousal support lawyer to discuss your options.

History of Proceedings

It is reported that the husband married the first wife in 1987, after which he resided with her in California. In 2012, he married the second wife in Lebanon. He then attempted to terminate the Lebanese marriage. The second wife subsequently filed a request for order (RFO) in California, asking the Court to award her temporary spousal support, among other things. The husband objected to the RFO, arguing that they were not married but had entered into a temporary marriage contract which he later terminated.

Allegedly, the Judge presiding over the case ultimately found that there was a valid marriage between the husband and the second wife and continued with proceedings on the petition for spousal support. The husband then filed a petition to nullify the second marriage on the grounds that it was bigamous and therefore void pursuant to Family Code Section 2201(a). The case was eventually transferred to a second Judge who declared the marriage void and that the second wife was not a putative spouse. The second wife appealed. Continue reading

The California Courts have the authority to impose permanent spousal and child support obligations. Merely because a support obligation is permanent does not mean it cannot be modified, however. Recently, a California Court issued a ruling in which it discussed the grounds for granting a request for a spousal support modification in a case in which it ultimately reversed the Trial Court ruling. If you need assistance with a spousal or child support issue, it is advisable to contact a San Diego family law attorney to discuss your options.

Facts of the Case

It is reported that the husband and wife married in 1999, decided to separate in 2013, and were divorced in 2016. They had three children born of the marriage; two of the children are now independent adults, while the third, a minor, has non-verbal autism and requires constant care for the duration of his life. The mother is the minor child’s primary caretaker and has primary physical custody of him.

It is alleged that pursuant to an order issued by the Trial Court, the husband was obligated to pay permanent spousal support and child support to the wife. In 2020 the husband filed a motion to reduce his support obligations on the grounds that his salary had been reduced as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Trial Court ultimately granted the order, and the wife appealed. Continue reading

When people decide to legally end their marriage, it is not uncommon for the Courts to order one party to pay the other spousal support. Generally, when the California Courts impose a spousal support obligation on a party in a divorce action, the obligation will cease if the party receiving support remarries. There are exceptions to the general rule, though, as demonstrated in a recent California ruling issued in a divorce matter. If you are subject to a spousal support order and have questions regarding modification, it is in your best interest to meet with a San Diego spousal support attorney as soon as possible.

Factual and Procedural Background

It is reported that the husband and the wife were married for about 13 years before deciding to end their marriage. They stipulated a judgment of dissolution; as part of the judgment, the husband agreed to pay the wife $1,000 in spousal support each month for seven years. About two and a half months after entering into the stipulated judgment, the wife remarried. The husband then moved to terminate his spousal support obligation.

Allegedly, the Trial Court denied his request on the grounds that the stipulated judgment did not agree to apply Family Code Section 4337, which states spousal support obligations terminate upon the remarriage of the party receiving support unless otherwise agreed to by the parties. The husband appealed. Continue reading

In many marriages, one spouse will be the main income earner while the other bears the primary responsibility of running the household and raising the children. When couples with disparate incomes divorce, the higher-earning spouse may be ordered to pay spousal support. Some parties do not accept support obligations willingly, however, and will go to great means to attempt to evade or reduce them. As shown in a recent California case, though, support obligations will only be modified if it is warranted by the relevant statutory law. If you intend to seek a divorce and have questions regarding spousal support, it is advisable to contact a skilled San Diego divorce attorney to discuss your rights.

History of the Case

It is alleged that the husband and wife were married for seventeen years and had three children during their marriage. In 2014, they divorced. The husband’s gross annual income was indicated as approximately $196,000 in the stipulated dissolution judgment. He was ordered to pay spousal support of approximately $4,300 per month and child support of around $3,600 per month. In 2017, the husband moved to amend his support obligations. The court found that there was a sufficient change of circumstances to warrant a modification. Specifically, his yearly income had decreased by $10,000, and his oldest child reached the age of majority, so support was no longer required. As such, the Trial Court issued an order decreasing spousal support to $3,800 a month. Two years later, the husband again moved to modify his spousal support obligations. The Trial Court denied the motion, and the husband appealed.

In many marriages, one spouse’s salary far exceeds the other’s. If a couple with disparate income divorces, it is not uncommon for the lesser earning spouse to seek some form of spousal support while the divorce is pending. If a court finds the circumstances warrant a temporary support award, it will typically examine the obligor spouse’s most recent income to arrive at the amount of support owed. That is not always an appropriate means of calculating alimony, however, as demonstrated in an opinion recently issued by a California court in a divorce action. If you intend to seek a divorce, it is prudent to meet with a knowledgeable San Diego divorce attorney to discuss how ending your marriage may affect you financially.

The Underlying Facts

It is reported that in 2018, the wife filed for divorce after close to 35 years of marriage. The couple had no minor children at that time. A short time later, the wife filed a request for an order seeking pendente lite spousal support. The court ultimately granted the wife ongoing pendente lite spousal support of over $31,000 per month. It based the support obligation on the husband’s income for the most recent historical year. The husband filed a motion for reconsideration, arguing that as his income fluctuated drastically from year to year, the trial court erred in solely analyzing his income from the prior year to determine the support obligation.

Calculating Pendente Lite Spousal Support

The Court of Appeal agreed with the husband and ruled that the trial court abused its discretion in calculating his prospective income on an unrepresentative sample period. The Court explained that while a dissolution of marriage action is pending, the court may order either spouse to pay any amount it deems necessary to support the other spouse. Temporary support is based on both the obligor spouse’s ability to pay and the supported spouse’s needs. While permanent support is determined by the financial situation of the parties after a dissolution, temporary support is used to maintain the standard of living as close as possible to the status quo while the trial is pending. Continue reading

After the Child Custody, spousal support (alimony) is the most argumentative and challenging-to-navigate procedure in every divorce.

In the middle of a divorce process, you may be thinking about the issue of alimony payments. Spousal Support or alimony is to assist a party to acquire skills or necessary training to obtain a job to become self-sufficient and you maintain the Status Quo.  (See In re Marriage of Schulze (1997) 60 Cal.App.4th 519 at p. 525; In re Marriage of Schulze (1997) 60 Cal.App.4th 519 at p. 522; and  In re Marriage of Burlini (1983) 234 Cal.App.3d 65 at p. 69.). If the divorce goes through litigation, spousal support can be awarded in Court. Both you and your ex-partner can negotiate these payments with the respective lawyers, which can assist you in ensuring fairer results.

In this post, you will get helpful information regarding negotiating alimony settlements during the process of divorce.

Domestic violence is the emotional, physical, or verbal abuse by one person against another where the parties are (See Cal. Family Code 6211):

  • Spouses or former spouses,
  • A person who regularly resides or formally reside in the household,
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