Spousal support or spousal maintenance, is money paid by one ex-spouse or same-sex domestic partner to the other as part of a dissolution proceeding. The problem with spousal support is always the same, the parties lived together and whether they both worked, or just one party worked, that income supported only one household. When one household becomes two, finances are often strained to the breaking point with the need to support two residences on the same income as before.
There are no standard calculations for spousal support similar to the child support guidelines calculator. Many factors affect whether spousal support is paid and how much and for how long it will have to be paid. These factors include:
- Length of the marriage or partnership
- Ability of the receiving spouse to earn an income
- Education level and work history of the receiving spouse
- Paying spouse’s ability to pay
- Terms and enforceability of any prenuptial / premarital agreement
- The ages and physical health of both spouses
- Time the receiving spouse stayed out of the workforce to raise the parties’ children.
The skills and experience of your family law attorney can make all the difference in spousal support negotiations. This is one area where you need an attorney who is experienced in court as well as in settlement. We have extensive experience in both areas and since we know what a likely award might be in court, we can advise you so that a fair settlement can be negotiated. If one side is not being reasonable in the negotiation process, we are prepared to be your advocates in the courtroom.
Whether you are seeking spousal support or you prefer to minimize your obligation to pay spousal support, we are here help.