Understanding How Temporary Spousal Support in California Works

Temporary spousal support is an order that comes during divorce proceedings and ends once divorce terms are agreed upon. California law allows the court to order a spouse to “pay any amount that is necessary” based on the supporting spouse’s income and the supported spouse’s needs. The goal is to maintain the standard of living both parties have been accustomed to before the separation occurred. But how does temporary spousal support in California work?

Alimony issues can be complicated, and the court considers many factors before granting or denying said support, as well as the actual amount paid. We’ll examine those factors below.

How Does the Court Calculate Temporary Spousal Support in California?

In California, calculating the amount of temporary spousal support paid relies on three main factors:

  • First, the court will examine the gross monthly income of both you and your spouse. Income adjustments such as child support, taxes, and union dues, are taken into consideration when determining incomes.
  • Second, the court will look at you and your spouse’s tax-filing statuses, such as head of household, single, married and filing jointly or married and filing separately.
  • Lastly, the court will then use the provided numbers to calculate the amount through the “Santa Clara County Guideline.” While you should note that using these factors aren’t necessarily final, they will give you a good idea of what you can expect a judge to decide.

In order to get the most accurate estimate of temporary spousal support, speak to an experienced Fresno alimony attorney.

When Will the Court Deny Temporary Spousal Support?

Under California law, the court may deny temporary spousal support if one of the following factors is determined. The spouse requesting support:

  • Holds adequate separate property
  • Earns their own livelihood
  • Possesses sufficient community property
  • Is not awarded child custody

Your attorney can help you review the factors in your case and explain what to expect.

Can Temporary Spousal Support Become Permanent?

Temporary spousal support will end the day the terms of a divorce are finalized. However, beyond that, the court may order a spouse to pay long-term spousal support as well for an indefinite period of time. The duration of such payments relies heavily upon the length of marriage. Basically, the longer a marriage lasts, the longer spousal support must be paid.

For instance, for marriages of 10 years or less, the duration of spousal support is usually one-half of the length of marriage. So, a marriage of 8 years would translate to 4 years of spousal support. In contrast, for marriages of 10 years or longer the duration of spousal support is much more complicated, involving many more factors the court must consider.

Contact a Fresno Alimony Attorney Today

If you are going through a divorce or separation and have questions about temporary spousal support in California, contact the Law Offices of Rick D. Banks for a free consultation.