Santa Barbara Spousal Support Attorney
Contact Santa Barbara Spousal Support Attorney
The decisions you make regarding you and your family in legal proceedings can affect you for the rest of your life. Santa Barbara Spousal Support Attorney at Drury Pullen Law represents more than fifty years of combined experience in California family law and ready to help you through this difficult time. It is crucial that as you navigate the waters of the divorce process, you have a guide that you can trust, and we are here to make certain that you have all the support you need from your spousal support lawyers. Call (805) 879-7523 or email us.
Determining Permanent and Temporary Spousal Support
Filing for divorce can be a very emotional and difficult time for anyone. Once an action for dissolution of marriage or legal separation has been filed, the Court can address the issue of spousal support by carefully reviewing numerous factors. If you are unable to settle or resolve the issue on your own, your divorce attorney will need to help you develop a detailed plan.
In this plan, we will work through the initial calculations that the state makes around spousal support, what your expectations for it should be, and what other factors there are in determining spousal support and whether temporary spousal support is appropriate in this situation while the divorce proceedings are ongoing. We will help make sure that you stay in the pilot seat with regard to negotiations and that, as proceedings evolve, you are in the most favorable legal position possible.
Negotiations: How To Make Them Work for You
In negotiations around divorce, it is extremely helpful to have someone experienced in your corner to help coach you through the process. There are a few starting places that can help keep these conversations more productive going forward.
Staying calm and centering yourself in a place of control helps you to present things clearly to the other party without getting drawn into traps. Even when emotions are strong, describing them with “I” language and focusing on how you feel helps you to remain on task and to avoid putting the other party on the defensive. This helps both parties remain focused on a solution and collaborate for the most favorable outcomes.
Once we are in the right headspace, approaching the other party directly and openly with important matters helps to make it so that neither party feels ambushed or caught off guard. This helps the other party hear your reasonable expectations and react to them like the good-faith efforts that they are. This will help to get you the most favorable outcome from your divorce, not just in spousal support but also in other matters.
By focusing on what you can do rather than what you can’t do in these situations, we will find a way to get you the optimal permanent spousal support situation possible.
What Is the Average Spousal Support in CA?
While every case is different, the guideline used by most of the states is that it takes 35% to 40% of the income from the higher earner minus 40% to 50% of the lower earner’s income. Each county in CA has slightly different rules for the calculation, though, so you should make certain to discuss your regional specifics with your divorce attorney.
Is Spousal Support Negotiable in CA?
Spousal support is negotiable, but it requires the participation of both parties and is a complex journey that requires the participation of both parties throughout the process. Keeping your emotions under control, expressing your feelings directly, and establishing reasonable requests in concert with your divorce attorney can help both parties come to an arrangement that fits the situation and right-size your permanent spousal support arrangements.
Factors That Inform Spousal Support
The actual determination of both permanent and temporary spousal support by the court is not as simple as applying an equation to the tax returns of both parties and making a ruling. In issuing spousal support, the court will consider many different factors, including all of the following circumstances:
- Sustainability of Income: The court will not only evaluate how much each of you makes but also evaluate the extent to which the earning capacity of each party is sustainable enough to maintain the standard of living like it was during the marriage. This means that a few excellent commissions this past year or a job contract that is coming to an end may be less of a factor in determining the totality of spousal support.
- Educational costs: The extent to which the support party contributed to the education, training, career position, or license of the supporting party are all factors that go into the calculation of the previous standard of living, and both spouses need to pay for permanent spousal support.
- Income, Liabilities, and Assets: The court will evaluate the ability of the supporting party to pay permanent or temporary spousal support, taking into account the supporting party’s earning capacity, earned and unearned income, assets, and standard of living. The full picture of the supporting party’s liabilities, as well as their income and assets, will determine the disposition of any such support in the divorce.
- Standards of Living: The court will do a thorough look into what precisely the needs of each party are based on the standards of living established during the marriage. While becoming accustomed to certain expenses together is part of the picture, if they cannot reasonably be said to be part of a party’s regular and routine standard of living, they would likely be discounted by the court for the purpose of these calculations.
- Length of Marriage: The duration of the marriage also plays a role in determining the extent to which the supported party has become accustomed to a standard of living. If the divorce happened after only a short period of time, the court might factor that into its determination of permanent spousal support.
- Employability and Childcare: Determining support also requires that the parties make an honest accounting of the ability of the supported party to engage in gainful employment without interfering with the interests of dependent children in the custody of the party. If the divorce would result in one party having to incur additional costs for childcare or to alter their lives or the lives of the children radically, this will absolutely be a major consideration in the determination of particularly permanent spousal support.
- Health and Age: The later in life a person divorces, the more likely it may be that the court awards more permanent spousal support. Similarly, if a person is less healthy and thus has more medical expenses or is less able to care for themselves, the court will pay particular attention to it in its judgment. The age and health of the parties is not casual consideration in a divorce and is an absolutely core factor.
- Criminal History: Any criminal convictions that either party has could play a role in the determination of spousal support. This could be due to fault or due to such a history impinging earning potential of one party or the other.
- Further Issues: Any other factors that the court determines are just and equitable could also enter these calculations and determinations. Either party may enter additional factors for consideration, but whether the court chooses to use them is a matter of specific case law and the judge’s discretion.
Keep in mind that there is no legal obligation to pay spousal support by one party to another until there is a Court order. In limited situations, the Court can order spousal support in a nullity action. A Court order is obtained by filing a Notice of Motion or an Order to Show Cause and attending a scheduled hearing.
Contact Santa Barbara Spousal Support Attorney
The decisions you make regarding you and your family in legal proceedings can affect you for the rest of your life. Santa Barbara Spousal Support Attorney at Drury Pullen Law represents more than fifty years of combined experience in California family law and is ready to help you through this difficult time. It is crucial that as you navigate the waters of the divorce process, you have a guide that you can trust, and we are here to make certain that you have all the support you need from your spousal support lawyers. Call (805) 879-7523 or email us.