Helping You Keep Your Finances Healthy After Divorce
The financial obligations of marriage don’t necessarily end when the people in it get divorced. When a divorce leaves two former spouses on unequal footing, spousal support (sometimes referred to as alimony) aims to even the playing field. The Stratte Firm is here to help people in Oakland navigate their financial futures after their divorces.
What Is Spousal Support?
Spousal support is a court-ordered payment someone receives from or gives to their ex-spouse during their divorce, after it’s finalized, or both. These payments are designed to:
- Allow people to maintain the standard of living they had while married
- Make up for sacrifices they made in their education or employment to raise children
- Compensate them for contributions they made to their ex-spouse’s education or employment
Some spousal support payments are temporary, which means they last for as long as a divorce case is in progress and end when the divorce is finalized. Other spousal support payments are part of long-term arrangements, meaning they last indefinitely or are permanent. Usually, spousal support payments are disbursed once monthly.
How Spousal Support Is Decided
Temporary spousal support payments are calculated based on each spouse’s needs and ability to pay. For example, if one spouse’s needs exceed their monthly income and the other spouse’s income exceeds their needs, the spouse with more income would be ordered to pay support to the spouse that earns less.
There are more factors at play in decisions regarding long-term support payments. These factors include:
- The length of the marriage
- Each spouse’s income
- Each spouse’s earning capacity
- Each spouse’s needs and ability to pay
- Each spouse’s property or debt
- Each spouse’s age and health
- If abuse happened in the marriage
Unlike temporary spousal support, there isn’t an easy formula judges can use to figure out long-term support. They look at each case holistically, evaluating all the factors at play.
Can Spousal Support Be Changed?
Temporary and long-term spousal support orders can be changed whether the ex-spouses reach an agreement together or go through the courts to do so. If they go through the courts, they’ll need to show the judge that there has been a substantial change in either of their circumstances to be granted a modification to their spousal support order.
Find Out What Your Finances Will Look Like After Divorce
If you’re going through a divorce, you likely have questions about how your finances will fare during and after the process. To get a better idea of how your situation will shape up, consult with attorney Erin Stratte. Call 510-480-1845 or fill out a request form to schedule.