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CoupleHandling a spousal or partner support case can be difficult. However, you can make it easier by learning something about these support cases in general, and then taking the court process one step at a time.

As you go through these materials, you will find that you can:

  • Get basic legal information about how spousal and partner support cases work,
  • Link to the court forms you need and fill them out online, and
  • Get an idea of other resources that may be available to help you.

At this web site you will find information about what to do:

a court case gets started:
It is important for both of the former spouses or partners to learn something about what support is, when you can ask for it, how it is calculated, and how to get help.

a court case:
Each person has different things they need to do depending upon whether they are the person that is asking for support, or the person that is being asked to pay support. It is important that each person read the information and follow the instructions in order. Forgetting a step, or not filing certain papers with the court can mean your case will be delayed, or that it could be decided without giving you a chance to tell your side of the story.

AFTER the court case:
There are important steps to follow so that you have a spousal or partner support order that can be enforced. If either person wants to make changes to the support order, this section also contains information about how to ask for those changes.

 Please note:

  • Some words have special meanings when used by the court. If you click on a word that is in blue with this symbol (example default Opens new
    window), a new window will open and it will give you an explanation of what the word means.
  • We also have some videos that may help you understand this information. If you see this link (exampleShow Me | Tell Me”) Opens new window you can click on this link which will take you to a page with video and audio files that you can watch and/or listen to on your computer.
  • Finally, most people have lots of questions about spousal support cases.  For this reason, we have created a list of Frequently Asked Questions, and a section with the forms you will need for your case.
  • To get the information you need, you can click on the section name that is in blue, use the “drop down” menu at the left side of each page, or you can click on the “Next” button at the bottom of some pages.

To view some short videos with general information about how California's court system works, click here. Opens new window


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