Protecting your rights & safeguarding your children’s future
Understanding Spousal Support
Q: How is spousal support determined?
A: The court must considers at least 14 statutory factors when considering the award of spousal support. The length of your marriage and the incomes of you and your spouse are typically the factors with the most weight.
Q: Am I entitled to spousal support?
A: Spousal support is not a right. Specific criteria will determine whether or not a spouse is eligible, and if so, in what amounts and for what length of time.
Q: Is there a formula for awarding spousal support?
A: There is no formula or calculation for determining spousal support. In some cases, the court will employ a rule of thumb that equates one year’s worth of support for every three to five years of marriage. However, this is at the court’s discretion and other factors are considered as well.
Q: Can a husband be awarded spousal support?
A: Either party may be awarded spousal support. The spouse who has historically earned a higher income is typically the party who will be ordered to pay support.
Q: How long will I receive spousal support?
A: You may be awarded temporary spousal support while your divorce is pending. This ends when the divorce is final. If your spouse is ordered to pay permanent spousal support, the duration is determined on a case-by-case basis. You may receive short term or long term support, based upon several factors, including your ability to earn a living.
Q: Do I have to continue paying spousal support if my ex gets remarried or starts living with someone?
A: Typically, you can ask the court to terminate a spousal support order in the case of death or remarriage. You can also request termination in the case of cohabitation if this provision has been included in your divorce decree.
Q: My ex got a raise, can I ask the court for more spousal support?
A: Spousal support orders may be modified if both of the following are true:
- Either spouse has experienced a change in circumstances, such as an involuntary decrease or increase in income, bonuses, medical expenses or living expenses, and
- the divorce decree specifically states that the order may be modified.
Call Laubacher & Co at 855-701-1004 to learn how your specific circumstances may affect a determination of spousal support.