About Spousal Support


Just as with child support, spousal support is one of the more contentious issues in Family Law. There are two timeframes for spousal support:

     1) Temporary Spousal Support

     2) Permanent Spousal Support

TEMPORARY SPOUSAL SUPPORT: At the beginning of the divorce one party may be entitled to spousal support (formerly called alimony). The party who earns more money is the one who may have to pay spousal support. At this temporary stage, the Court can use a support calculator, often called "DissoMaster". There may be a lot of issues that you want the Court to know about your case, but at the temporary stage the Court typically defaults to using a support calculator. One factor that the Court may consider at this temporary stage is the duration of the marriage. For example, if you were just married six months, the Court may not order any spousal support. It is a good idea for you to have a consultation with Nakos and Nakos to help you determine the spousal support order in your case.

PERMANENT SPOUSAL SUPPORT: The term "permanent" does not necessarily mean that spousal support will go on forever. The term is used to differentiate this stage of spousal support from temporary spousal support. "Permanent" spousal support is determined at or near the end of a case by the Court. The Court is not allowed to use the support calculator at this stage. The Court must consider factors such as the following: (1) The length of the marriage or domestic partnership; (2) What each person needs based on the standard of living they had during the marriage or domestic partnership; (3) What each person earns or could be earning if they had a job; (4) The impact of a spouse working has on the children; (5) The age and health of both parties; (6) Whether a spouse or domestic partner helped the other get an education, training, career, or professional license; (7) Whether there was domestic violence in the marriage or domestic partnership; (8) Whether a spouse’s, or domestic partner’s, career was affected by unemployment or by taking care of the children or home; and (9) The tax impact of spousal support.

Since "permanent" spousal support can go on for sometime after your divorce is final, it is very important that you take this stage seriously.

Nakos & Nakos is experienced at negotiating and litigating "permanent" spousal support. Nakos & Nakos highly suggest you at least come in for a consult on this issue.