Alimony and Spousal Support Lawyer in Los Angeles, CA
When a couple enters the divorce process, there are several issues that require consideration, including those in the financial realm, like alimony, or spousal support.
Spousal support is a term that refers to payments made by one spouse to another in the wake of a divorce settlement. These payments are meant to help a former spouse maintain the standard of living to which they have grown accustomed during the course of the marriage.
Because divorce scenarios can often involve a spouse who has been out of work for an extended period of time, it can be difficult to maintain an expected standard of living. That’s where state laws come in – they help bridge the gap for spouses at risk for having that standard of living compromised.
Types of Spousal Support
There are two types of spousal support that a court may award in the wake of a divorce. These are known as temporary and permanent alimony.
- Temporary alimony is a financial payment made by the higher earning spouse to their former spouse during the course of divorce proceedings, in an effort to provide some financial support. However, this payment ends once the divorce is finalized and a permanent spousal support award is in place
- Permanent alimony, or “long-term” support as it is commonly known, is a consistent support payment made by the payor spouse to their former, “supported” spouse. Unlike a temporary alimony award, this type of spousal support is awarded to assist the lesser-earning spouse with maintaining the marital standard of living, even after the divorce is finalized
Although permanent alimony appears to indicate a permanent order, few spousal support awards actually continue on a permanent basis. Usually this will depend on the length of the marriage. For example, short-term marriages, or those lasting less than 10 years, will typically not see support awards exceed half the length of the marriage.
It’s important to note, however, that the length of the marriage is measured from the date of marriage to the official date of separation.
Factors to Consider for Spousal Support
Before a court issues an award for spousal support, particularly permanent alimony, there are a number of factors to consider, including:
- The supported spouse’s marketable skills, as well as the job market to accommodate those skills. This can include any necessary education or training to enhance and develop those skillsets
- Both spouses’ financial requirements, compared to the marital standard of living
- Any financial obligations, debts or assets for both spouses
- The length of marriage
- The age and overall wellness of both spouses
Though it is possible to come to a support agreement, sometimes as the result of a prenuptial agreement, that is not always the case. In the event that spouses cannot reach a permanent alimony agreement, it is up to a judge to decide the amount and duration of any long-term spousal support award.
Alimony Attorney in Los Angeles
If you or someone you know is dealing with a divorce, including one where spousal support is an issue, it is important to enlist the assistance of a qualified family law attorney, who can evaluate your case according to existing state laws and recommend a course of action towards resolution.
For those residing in Southern California, including residents of the City of Los Angeles, the legal team at Whitmarsh Family Law, PC can provide the sound legal advice you need when dealing with divorce.
We specialize exclusively in handling a wide array of family law issues, including cases where spousal support is a significant factor. Our team of highly skilled attorneys is well versed in the laws governing divorce and alimony in the state of California, and we are prepared to work with you to devise a strategy that yields the best possible result.
Dealing with divorce is never easy, but it is possible to protect you and your future interests. To schedule a preliminary consultation to evaluate your spousal support claim, contact Whitmarsh Family Law, PC at (310) 552-3505.