When a marriage ends, there are difficult financial issues that need to be reconciled. Minor children require resources and spouses may not exit the union on equal footing. Finding a fair and balanced exit plan can involve difficult negotiations and litigation. That’s why it’s important to work with an experienced Riverside County child and spousal support attorney. At the Law Office of Richard L. Cookson, we can help you get the child and spousal support you deserve.
In California, parents have an obligation to provide financial support for minor children that is “suitable to the child’s circumstances.” State law considers each parent’s ability to contribute to the child’s welfare and generally recognizes the custodial parent’s obligation fulfilled by living in the same household. In effect, the non-custodial parent pays regular support installments based on California guidelines. But those obligations can enter some gray areas. When economic disparities exist, a spouse may petition the court for additional contributions. Hardship reductions can also be sought. It’s important to understand that child support is not simply a math calculation. It involves a set of facts and arguments can be made to increase or decrease money that differ from California’s baseline standards.
Commonly called “alimony,” spousal support is intended to put people on relatively equal footing after divorce. In many relationships, one person acts as the main earner and the other takes on the primary homemaking and child care responsibilities. That can be a fair balance while married, but afterwards the non-working or underemployed spouse requires financial support to maintain a similar quality of life.
Factors that go into a fair support number include age, health, earning capacity, standard of living, length of marriage and the ability to pay. There are also several types of alimony. These include:
- Temporary: Payments may be ordered until the final divorce decree is issued.
- Rehabilitative: Generally paid only until the lower-earning spouse becomes self-sufficient.
- Permanent: Often ordered in long-term marriages and continues until death or possibly remarriage.
- Reimbursement: Aimed at paying for re-education or reintegration into the workforce expenses.
- Lump Sum: A one-time payout that covers support and a marital property division.
In many cases, attorneys can negotiate a monetary arrangement between the couples for court approval. In other cases, getting fair spousal support compensation may require litigation.
If you are considering divorce or facing a support matter, it’s imperative that you have an experienced Riverside County child and spousal support attorney to help you navigate the legal system. Contact the Law Office of Richard L. Cookson today for a consultation.