Essential Facts about Alimony in San Diego Divorce

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When a couple decides to get a divorce in San Diego, California, the court may order one spouse to pay the other a certain amount of support money every month. This is known as alimony or spousal support.

When determining if spousal support should be awarded or not, as well as deciding on the amount and duration of alimony, the court will consider a number of factors.

In a marriage that has a short duration or those that lasted for less than ten years, the courts assume that every spouse has kept the same ability to support him/herself just like before the marriage. Even if a short period of adjustment is expected, the court expects each spouse to become considerably independent and self-sufficient within a reasonable time frame. On the other hand, for a marriage that lasted for ten years or more, the court can find that an extended support should be provided. This decision depends on the specifics of the case.

It is the court’s discretion to give temporary spousal support before trial at any time. Generally, temporary support is awarded to safeguard the status quo. In San Diego, judges rely on a computer calculation of temporary spousal support utilizing a program called DissoMaster. This program cannot be used in setting permanent support. 

In permanent spousal support, the court must consider the earning ability, profitable skills, education, training and job of the supported spouse; interruption in the earning capacity of a spouse due to the time the spouse stayed home to care for the children and the household; the supported spouse contribution to his/her spouse’s career, education or professional license; the capacity of the supporting spouse to pay; the needs of each spouse based on their standard of living during the marriage; assets and debts of each spouse; the duration of the marriage; the age and health condition of the spouses; if there is a presence of domestic violence; tax consequences of alimony and other factors that the court determines to be just and equitable 

Termination of Spousal Support

There are particular instances that end the responsibility to pay or right to receive alimony such as the death of either spouse and the remarriage of the spouse who is receiving spousal support.

Additionally, considerable changes in a spouse’s life may result to modification or removal of spousal support such as the retirement or laying off of the spouse who pays spousal support; significant increase in the income of the spouse who receives spousal support; and if the spouse who pays alimony lives with a sexual partner without marriage.

Usually, when a court terminates alimony, it cannot be restored even if the situation of the receiving spouse changes considerably. There are several other issues that may have direct impact on alimony. It is important to hire a competent lawyer ahead of time so that your attorney can make a complete evaluation of all the issues relevant to your case.

For more information on Bakersfield Divorce visit the author's website, or its sister site on Mesa Divorce.

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