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Family Law

Newport Beach Spousal Support & Alimony Lawyers

Spousal Support & Alimony Lawyers in Newport Beach, CA

Spousal support, also referred to as alimony, is one of the main issues to address in a divorce. This is the amount of money paid by one spouse to another after the end of a marriage. It is typically paid each month for a certain amount of time, depending on a wide variety of factors. With nearly 50 years of experience, our attorneys are well-versed in all aspects of divorce law.

Whether you are the party seeking spousal support or the party who will end up paying support, we can help you determine a plan. Spousal support can have such a tremendous impact on your financial situation, that it is important to work with an experienced legal professional who can protect your interests. Our alimony lawyers in Newport Beach can offer advice and guidance regarding, but not limited to, the following:

  • Whether you may be entitled to receive or required to pay spousal support;
  • How to calculate spousal support;
  • How long spousal support will last;
  • What impact receiving or paying spousal support may have on taxes;
  • Negotiating for a fair spousal support amount; and

Litigating in court to pursue a court order in your favor.

Contact Sullivan Law & Associates at (949) 590-8100 to discuss your divorce and spousal support concerns. We are here to help.

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Temporary Spousal Support in California

During the divorce proceedings, the higher-earning spouse may provide temporary spousal support to the lower-earning spouse. This support extends from the initial filing of the divorce until the final judgment. Permanent spousal support, on the other hand, is paid after the dissolution judgment.

Temporary spousal support is governed by Family Code §3600. It is paid in an amount necessary to support the other spouse and is typically set to maintain the status quo. When determining temporary spousal support, the Family Court takes into account the financial needs of the supported spouse, as well as the supporting spouse’s ability to pay. 

Factors such as income, the financial circumstances of the marriage, and net disposable income after spousal support are considered by tools like X-spouse or Dissomaster.

Permanent Spousal Support in California

Permanent spousal support is determined by the court based on various factors outlined in Family Code §4320. These factors include the marital standard of living, income or earning capacity of each party, impact on employment due to child care during the marriage, sacrifices made by the supported spouse for the supporting spouse’s career or education, ability to pay, needs of the supported spouse, assets and debts of the marital estate, length of the marriage, needs of the children, age and health of the parties, history of domestic violence, tax implications, and any hardships.

The court takes all these factors into account when deciding on permanent spousal support. Additionally, the court considers the length of the marriage and categorizes it as either short-term or long-term.

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Frequently Asked Questions

How Long Do You Have to Be Married to Pay Spousal Support in California?

In California, there is no minimum duration of marriage required to receive spousal support. However, the court considers the length of the marriage when determining alimony payments. The purpose of alimony in California is to maintain the standard of living for the spouse who earns less. It is important to note that alimony is not obligatory.

When couples go through a divorce, one common question about spousal support is how the length of the marriage affects the court’s decision. Some marriages last only a few months, while others span decades, which greatly impacts spousal support. However, the length of the marriage is just one factor the court considers when determining the amount and duration of spousal support. Unlike child support, spousal support is not mandatory, and the court has discretion in awarding it.

In California, short-term marriages (10 years or less) generally result in spousal support for half the length of the marriage, while long-term marriages may lead to support for longer periods. However, the duration of the marriage does not guarantee spousal support.

When Does Spousal Support End in California?

Under California state law, spousal support payments cease once a written document specifying the end date is approved by the court. It is crucial to familiarize yourself with California law when initiating divorce proceedings or making any legal petitions. At Sullivan Law & Associates, our spousal support attorneys in Newport Beach possess decades of legal experience to assist our clients in resolving their spousal support matters effectively.

What Factors Impact The Payment Amount?

California has a comprehensive set of criteria that judges must consider when determining the support order. Temporary support may vary depending on the county in which you reside. However, for post-divorce support, judges are required to apply the factors outlined in the California Family Code Section 4320.

The code enumerates fourteen factors, encompassing a wide range of considerations, including the catch-all provision of “Any other factors the court determines are just and equitable.” This affords judges significant discretion when establishing alimony payments.

Is Spousal Support Taxed?

Previously, spousal support, whether temporary or permanent, used to be taxable for the supported spouse and tax-deductible for the supporting spouse. However, there has been a recent change in the law that renders such payments non-deductible for federal tax purposes. It is worth noting that there could still be some potential deductibility for state tax purposes.

Contact Our Newport Beach Spousal Support Attorneys Now

Divorce is complicated enough as it is, without the need to deal with financial issues that can have such a considerable influence on your life. As Orange County spousal support attorneys, we at Sullivan Law & Associates are dedicated to supporting you and representing your interests during these difficult times. 

We will be happy to discuss your options with you regarding alimony and can offer insight into how it is calculated. We know what the courts consider when awarding alimony and also know how to present our clients’ cases to benefit their final spousal support orders.

For over 40 years, we have been representing clients across Orange County in family law matters. We know the law and know how to apply our skills to help our clients face more stable futures after the end of a marriage. Call our offices at (949) 590-8100 to arrange a consultation with one of our spousal support and alimony lawyers. We serve Newport Beach and the surrounding Orange County areas.