Spousal Support

According to California Evidence Code §4300, so long as spouses or registered domestic partners are living together, they owe each other a mutual duty of support. A spouse, or a county his or her behalf, may bring an action against the obligor spouse to enforce the duty of support.

In a judgment of dissolution or legal separation, the court may order a party to pay for the support of the other party in an amount, and for a period of time, that the court determines is just and reasonable, based on the standard of living established during the marriage, taking into consideration the circumstances set forth in Family Code §4320. Under the Domestic Violence Prevention Act, the court has the authority to award spousal support to a petitioner even before a finding that he or she has been abused, with certain exceptions.

A spousal support award is not mandatory in dissolution or legal separation proceedings. Rather, courts have the discretion, within statutory parameters, to award or deny spousal support for a period of time that reflects both parties' abilities to provide for their own needs. A trial court's discretion is reversible only when abuse of discretion is shown. The present needs and abilities of parties must be shown by facts and circumstances, based on evidence on the record and inferences reasonably drawn therefrom at the time of the hearing.

If you are looking for an attorney who will invest the time and prepare your case thoroughly, please contact us at (714) 733-7066 or jos@josfamilylaw.com.

Call us to schedule a free consultation.