A Los Angeles Area Alimony Attorney Answers Five Frequently Asked Questions
Alimony law in California is complex with many variables such as income, assets, and duration of the marriage. New clients that contact an alimony attorney are often confused about their rights to receive alimony or the requirements for paying it—knowing the facts about alimony in California will help you protect your rights.
Alimony is financial assistance paid by one spouse to the other after a divorce. It is also known as spousal support. When a marriage dissolves, spousal support is intended to assist the spouse with a lesser income in maintaining a financially equivalent lifestyle. The court determines the needs, which may include necessities such as food, clothes, and housing; medical expenditures; childcare and educational expenses for children; and other expenses.
No. Alimony is not automatically granted upon divorce in California. In other words, just because you and your spouse divorce does not mean you must begin paying or receiving alimony.
Alimony in California is classified into two types: temporary and long-term. Temporary alimony is support paid while the divorce case is underway and is not normally subject to stringent criteria. Long-term spousal support, also known as alimony at the judgment phase, frequently enters into those more complicated requirements.
The family court judge will consider the length of the marriage; the age and health of both spouses; the income and assets of each spouse; any exceptional circumstances that may come into play; and any other considerations that may impact either spouse’s capacity to pay or receive support.
The duration of the marriage usually determines how long alimony is paid. Although California courts have the authority to grant alimony for shorter or longer durations, most alimony payments for marriages of less than ten years continue for one-half the marriage’s length. However, the court may recognize marriages of less than ten years as long-term under certain conditions. A judge can also discontinue alimony in longer marriages, depending on circumstances.
The Berman Law Group handles all elements of family law, including assisting clients in establishing, modifying, or enforcing alimony agreements. Our family law specialists will work with you to determine your specific present and long-term needs, evaluate your legal choices, and create a tailored plan to achieve your goals. Call us at (310) 788-3837 if you have any spousal support concerns.
We serve Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, Brentwood, Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades, and surrounding Greater Los Angeles communities.