Spousal Support

Temporary Spousal support is also formulaic.   Temporary support may be requested by either party after a petitioner for dissolution, legal separation, or annulment has been filed; or a domestic violence restraining order is in place.

Permanent Spousal support is not formulaic. California law does not define what is “income” for the purposes of Spousal support. Permanent spousal support is determined by carefully reviewing numerous factors. The court has tremendous discretion in setting spousal support. Permanent spousal support is determined by a person’s ability to provide support, which includes factors outside of those used to determine child support. Permanent spousal support requires a party to present detailed evidence about each factor set forth below:


  1. The length of the marriage or domestic partnership;
  2. The needs of each person based on the standard of living he or she had during the marriage or domestic partnership;
  3. What each person pays or can pay (his includes actual earnings and earning capacity) to keep the standard of living they had during the marriage or domestic partnership;
  4. Whether employment would make it too hard to take care of the children;
  5. The age and health of both people;
  6. Debts and property;
  7. Whether one spouse or domestic partner assisted the other to get an education, training, career, or professional license;
  8. Whether there was domestic violence in the marriage or domestic partnership;
  9. Whether one spouse’s, or domestic partner’s, career was affected by unemployment or by taking care of the children or home; and
  10. The tax impact of spousal support (note: federal and state tax laws have not been changed to recognize domestic partnerships).

Depending on your particular situation, you may need assistance gathering detailed evidence the court needs to establish permanent spousal support. My office has options at varying prices to assist you in this process. I offer a free 30-minutes consultation.* Please call or email, and we can discuss your options and illuminate the path ahead.