Newport Beach Spousal Support Lawyer

Newport Beach Spousal Support Lawyer

Newport Beach Spousal Support Attorney


There are many financial decisions couples need to make when a divorce is imminent. The decision to separate or divorce not only ends an emotional relationship, but also a financial one. One of the most often disputed financial decisions at this time is that of spousal support, also known as alimony.  Whether you are the payor or the one being financially supported, spousal support can have a significant impact on your financial future. It will be helpful to have an experienced Newport Beach spousal support lawyer on your side.

At O’Leary & Shenasan Law, our experienced spousal support lawyers can help you understand your rights and obligations regarding spousal support.. We can provide you with the guidance and representation you need to protect yourself and your interests that will not leave you at a financial disadvantage.

Newport Beach Alimony Attorneys Ensuring Your Interests Are Protected

When you and your spouse divorce, there are several decisions you need to make that will have a long-term impact on your quality of life. One of the decisions the California courts generally make on behalf of those involved is whether one spouse must provide the other with monetary support, which is also known as alimony or spousal support. At O’Leary & Shenasan Law, in Newport Beach, our family law attorneys have extensive experience guiding clients throughout California in divorce actions involving alimony. Whether you are the recipient of support or must pay it, we offer skilled counsel in ensuring an equitable result.

Alimony is one of the most frequently fought-over issues in divorce, and while courts and lawyers strive to split marital assets equitably, “equitable” does not necessarily mean “equal.” At O’Leary & Shenasan Law, our lawyers know the laws governing spousal support and the courts tasked with making support decisions. Whether your divorce is amicable or contentious, we always work to reach a fair agreement between our client and the opposing party.

Southern California Attorneys Experienced in Negotiating & Litigating Alimony Agreements

When determining whether alimony should be granted, how much should be awarded, and how long it should continue, California judges weigh certain factors, including a couple’s length of marriage, their standard of living during the marriage, the relative income of each individual, and the needs of each spouse. Retaining an experienced alimony attorney can help you convince the court that you need support, increasing the chance that alimony will be awarded. Alternatively, we can also work to convince the judge that your ex-spouse does not need spousal support or needs less than he or she asked for.

In California, there are four types of alimony agreements:

  • Temporary alimony. This type of alimony provides support during the divorce action, which may include attorney fees and relevant litigation costs.
  • Rehabilitative alimony. Rehabilitative alimony helps a dependent spouse become self-reliant and may end when an ex-spouse has found a job or has completed his or her education.
  • Reimbursement alimony. This type of alimony is awarded to the spouse who worked to support the family while the other spouse pursued professional training or career development. It may end or the amount paid may decrease once the spouse has been compensated.
  • Permanent alimony. Permanent alimony is given to a spouse who is seriously ill or who has demonstrated economic need. This agreement can be modified due to changing financial needs or other circumstances.

Our attorneys work with you to determine what kind of alimony is the best for your situation.

The 10-Year Rule in California for a Divorce

The 10-year rule in California refers to the duration of marriage. It is the key to determining spousal support payments. If a marriage has lasted for 10 years or more, it is considered a long-term marriage under California law.

In a long-term marriage, the court has more discretion when ordering spousal support. Specifically, the court can order spousal support indefinitely. It might also order alimony until the spouse receiving support remarries or either spouse passes away. In contrast, for marriages that lasted less than 10 years, spousal support is typically ordered for a shorter period.

However, the 10-year rule is not an absolute rule. The court will consider many other factors when determining the duration and amount of spousal support.

Factors the California Court Will Consider When Granting Alimony

In California, the court considers several factors when making decisions related to divorce and alimony, including:

  • Length of the marriage. The duration of the marriage is one of the most important factors that the court considers. Generally, the longer the marriage, the more likely it is that spousal support will be granted.
  • Standard of living established during the marriage. The court will consider the lifestyle that the couple enjoyed during their marriage. This includes the type of residence they lived in, the type of cars they drove, and any other expenses they incurred.
  • Age and health of the parties. The court will consider the age and health of each spouse. They will also consider any disabilities or medical conditions that affect their ability to work and support themselves.
  • Income and earning capacity of each spouse. The court will consider the income and earning capacity of each spouse, including their education, work experience, and job skills.
  • Needs of each spouse. The court will consider the financial needs of each spouse, including their expenses and debts.
  • Domestic violence. If there is evidence of domestic violence, the court may take that into account when making decisions about spousal support.
  • Tax consequences. The court may consider the tax implications of any decision it makes regarding spousal support.

These factors are not exhaustive. The court may consider other factors that are relevant to the particular case. A spousal support lawyer can help you understand the court’s decision-making process when determining alimony. This can give you a better idea of the amount and type of alimony that you or your spouse will receive.

Newport Beach Alimony Lawyers Striving for Your Peace of Mind

At O’Leary & Shenasan Law, our attorneys represent clients who are seeking alimony as well as those who will be required to pay it. Our clients are often concerned about whether they are required to pay alimony if their circumstances change. Others come to us if they are not receiving the alimony payments specified by the agreement. We can help you present evidence to the court as to why the amount you pay should be decreased or request that the court properly enforce the existing alimony agreement.

FAQs About Newport Beach, CA Alimony Laws

Is alimony mandatory in California?

No, alimony is not mandatory in California. The court determines whether to award spousal support on a case-by-case basis. They have similar discretion concerning the amount and duration of any award. When deciding whether to award spousal support, the court considers several factors, such as:

  • The length of the marriage
  • The earning capacity and needs of each spouse
  • The age and health of each spouse

How long after a divorce can you ask for alimony in California?

In California, once a divorce is finalized, it is generally not possible to request spousal support. However, during the divorce process, a spouse may request spousal support. This may be done as either part of the initial divorce petition or at a later stage in the proceedings. If spousal support is not addressed in the initial divorce judgment, a spouse may be able to request it later. However, there must be a material change in circumstances that justifies such a request.

How does a wife get alimony in California?

A: In California, either spouse can request spousal support during a divorce or legal separation proceeding. Spousal support is intended to help the supported spouse maintain the standard of living established during the marriage. The amount and duration of the support are based on their needs and the paying spouse’s ability to pay. If the spouses are unable to agree on the amount and duration of spousal support, the court will decide based on several factors.

Does alimony change if you cheat in California?

In California, spousal support is not affected by infidelity or other marital misconduct. California is a no-fault divorce state. This means that a spouse does not have to prove wrongdoing or fault to obtain a divorce. Instead, either spouse can file for divorce based on irreconcilable differences. This simply means that the marriage has broken down and cannot be reconciled.

Does cohabitation affect alimony in California?

Cohabitation can potentially affect spousal support in California. If the receiving spouse is cohabitating with a new partner, it may be seen as evidence that they no longer need financial support from their ex-spouse. However, simply cohabiting with a new partner does not automatically terminate spousal support in California. For cohabitation to affect spousal support, the paying spouse would need to file a request with the court. This petition can ask the court to modify or terminate the support order based on the cohabitation.

Contact Our Experienced Newport Beach Spousal Support Lawyers Today

At O’Leary & Shenasan Law, our attorneys are dedicated to working toward an equitable alimony result for the clients we represent throughout California. A compassionate family lawyer from our firm can assist you with issues such as temporary spousal support, long-term spousal support, and modifications to existing spousal support orders. Call us at (949) 825-5224 or contact us online to schedule a consultation with a family law attorney at our Newport Beach office.

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