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Often during a separation or divorce, individuals are faced with many challenges throughout the process.

Though the marriage might be coming to a close, a spouse may still need financial support in order to start a new life. Whether or not a spouse is entitled to spousal support is dependent on a series of factors. It can prove to be difficult for both parties during a time of high stress, and it is important that facts,  as well as the entire alimony process, is handled professionally and efficiently within a timely matter.

Here is some helpful information on what spousal support is and if it could be the right option for you in your time of need.

What is Spousal Support?

Spousal support, otherwise know as alimony, is a court-appointed financial assistance system from one spouse to another after a separation or divorce. In the case that one spouse makes more money the other, the less financially stable spouse is entitled to spousal support in order to regain financial independence.

Spousal supports laws can vary from state to state, however in California, the courts system will ask for organized evidence on a select number of court appointed questions. Although the factors can seem easy to answer, alimony legal issues can be complex, and it is crucial to have a proper attorney to assist you.

Earning Capacity for Each Partner

When a judge decides on the amount of spousal support, and the duration the less well off spouse will need, he or she takes into consideration of each spouse’s ability to obtain income. Depending on the current standard of living, the spouse that will need financial support is examined for whether or not they were unable to earn income due to domestic duties.

The judge will also take into consideration the lower income spouse’s current career skills and the time needed to further those skills. Either through experience or education, the lower income spouse will need time to gain financial independence based on the standard of living throughout the marriage.

The amount of spousal support is just as equally based on the higher-income spouse’s ability to pay alimony and his or her ability to earn income.

Length of Marriage

Typically, the amount of time a spouse will need alimony will depend on the duration of the marriage or domestic partnership. Although the California law pertaining to alimony states “a reasonable amount of time allocated for spousal support is equal to half of the marriage duration,” California judges have the power to change the length of time for spousal support based on case to case circumstances.

However, long-term marriages of 10 years or more can result in the judge deciding to make spousal support an indefinite length of time.


There are far more factors in which a judge will consider when deciding spousal support in a divorce case. Though it may seem stressful, the right lawyer will counsel you on your rights and obligations under California Law to ensure your financial well-being. At Minella Law Group, highly experienced professionals will handle all of your legal needs efficiently and affordably.

For more information on spousal support or to schedule a consultation, click the button below, or call us at 619-289-7948. We look forward to helping you!

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