In California, spousal support and alimony are not the same thing. Both effectively have similar outcomes, that is, provide income to a spouse or partner for support for a set period of time after the end of a marriage. One of the differences is spousal support is paid by one spouse to another before the final dissolution order and alimony is paid after the final dissolution order.
When considering spousal support vs. alimony. The first thing to be aware of is spousal support is usually paid indefinitely, whereas alimony is paid for a set period of time. There are instances when it may make sense to ask the court for spousal support instead of alimony and vice versa. Your divorce lawyer can help you determine which is best for your situation.
Spousal support is provided for in California Family Code section 4320 but alimony is not mentioned in the California Family Code. What does alimony mean?
Well, for one thing, alimony is more straightforward and therefore easier to prove. The spouse requesting alimony simply has to show they’re in need and don’t have enough money to live independently. He or she must then prove they made valuable contributions to the marriage and the other spouse benefited from having them around.
Alimony is often ordered when there are children from the marriage but not always. In addition, the party requesting alimony has to show their ex can afford to pay the requested amount.
In contrast, if the marriage was long, then the person who has been out of work longer may want spousal support. The amount of support ordered by the court depends on the income of both spouses.
There are several types of spousal support that are available in Rancho Cucamonga. It can be paid in one lump sum or in periodic payments and be indefinite or temporary. It can also be paid in the form of property where the spouse can award ownership of property, such as a home or estate, to the other in lieu of financial support.
For those that are granted temporary support, an order modifying spousal support will have to be filed before the case goes to trial. That’s because after the judgment is made, the court will have to be petitioned for the modification before a hearing can be granted.
A lot of people ask, is alimony tax deductible? Again, it’s complicated. Since 2019, there is no federal tax deduction for alimony payments and support isn’t reported as income. In California however you’ll have to make an adjustment to Schedule CA for alimony paid or received. If you reside in Rancho Cucamonga, you may want to seek legal counsel.
Spousal support vs. alimony: what’s the difference? There’s no cookie-cutter answer. Each case is unique. Call 909-466-7661 to talk to a spousal support attorney at the Law Office of Laurence J. Brock or fill out the form on our website to discuss your situation.
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