When it comes to managing your divorce, financial considerations can be just as important as physical and emotional ones. If separating from your spouse would create a great disparity between your respective incomes, you may need to pursue some form of support in order to maintain a stable standard of living—or conversely, they may need to pursue that kind of support from you.
Whether you are seeking maintenance yourself or a soon-to-be ex-spouse is seeking it from you, assistance from a Thousand Oaks spousal support lawyer could be crucial to effectively pursuing a favorable outcome. Without representation from a seasoned family law attorney, you may be at a significant disadvantage during these negotiations, which could lead to you paying too much or not receiving an appropriate amount.
Temporary spousal support may be ordered while the divorce process is ongoing in order to help the lower-earning spouse with necessary expenses until that process concludes. Then, permanent support orders begin once the divorce is finalized and will have a specific end date in many cases, but long-term marriages of over ten years can be a notable exception.
Generally, permanent spousal support is ordered in cases involving long term marriages and can require the lower-earning spouse to make reasonable efforts to become self-supporting. For a more in-depth discussion of spousal support, be sure to order my book.
The only circumstances under which a court may order truly permanent support is if the two parties were married for an extremely long time and/or the lower-earning party cannot reasonably be expected to ever support themselves financially due to advanced age or some kind of disability. A qualified attorney in Thousand Oaks could clarify what type of spousal support order might be available in a particular scenario.
One of the primary factors courts use to determine whether to issue a permanent support order is the length of the marriage in question. For marriages that last under ten years, for example, permanent spousal support orders typically last no longer than half the length of the marriage. Other factors that may impact the length, amount, or existence of a spousal maintenance order include:
If any factors relevant to a support order change over time, the parties can seek a modification or termination of their order through either a written contract they draft together and submit to a judge for approval, or through a Request for Orders demonstrating a “material change in circumstances.” A lawyer in Thousand Oaks could assess an individual’s case and determine how spousal support they may be required to pay or eligible to receive based on their circumstances.
Spousal support does not play a role in every divorce and legal separation. However, if your divorce will significantly change the standard of living you can financially maintain, a spousal support order could be critical to preserving your future stability.
Retaining an experienced Thousand Oaks spousal support lawyer could make all the difference in how your hearing turns out and what kind of financial circumstances you find yourself in as you move on from your former partner. To schedule a consultation about your unique circumstances, call today.