Who Has to Pay Spousal or Partner Support?

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If a couple gets a divorce, or ends their domestic partnership, the court may order one of them to pay the other a fixed amount of money each month. 

There are no set formulas for how much money would have to be paid, or for how long. However, there are a few guidelines the court would follow.

  • The court will try to make the amount of money paid “just and reasonable, based on the standard of living established during the marriage.” 

  • The court will take into account how long the couple was married, or in a registered domestic partnership, when deciding how long the support should be paid.

The court may tell the person receiving support that he or she should make reasonable effort to assist in providing for his or her own support needs. (see California Family Code, section 4330) Opens new window

This is an area of law that can get complicated. You might want to consider talking with a lawyer with experience in this field.




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