Permanent Spousal Support in California

Posted on : July 9, 2016
California Divorce Lawyer

Spousal support, sometimes called alimony, is a form of payment from one spouse to the other after a divorce. It is designed to help the spouse with the least resources bridge the gap until they gain financial independence, and in most cases, it is temporary. However, there are some cases in which spousal support can be made permanent. Here’s what you need to know.

Factors the Court Will Look At for Permanent Spousal Support

The court will evaluate a variety of factors regarding your case in order to determine if awarding permanent alimony would be fair and beneficial. These factors include but are not limited to:


  • Whether the supported spouse has a reduced earning capacity due to time given to domestic duties that is expected to continue
  • Whether the supported spouse dedicated time to domestic duties to allow the earning spouse the ability to gain an education, training, or advance their career
  • The job skills of the supported spouse and the current market for those job skills, and whether or not it is feasible for the supported spouse to receive additional training and/or education in order to become financially independent
  • The ability of the earning spouse to pay spousal support
  • The financial needs of each spouse and the standard of living each spouse has become accustomed to
  • How long the marriage lasted
  • Whether the supported spouse gaining employment would interfere with the well being of children in the home
  • The property and assets owned by each spouse, as well as debt obligations
  • The age and health of each spouse


While it is generally expected that any spousal support that is awarded will be temporary, extreme cases do warrant permanent alimony. The key to obtaining permanent alimony is clearly illustrating the above factors. If, for example, you are in a position where you cannot be expected to provide for yourself after a divorce and expect this to continue, you need to discuss the option of permanent spousal support with an experienced divorce lawyer. Something to keep in mind, however, is that permanent spousal support is rarely ever truly “permanent.” It may last years, but circumstances may change that allow the support to end.

Contact the Law Office of Barbara E. McNamara Today

If you’re involved in a divorce and have questions about spousal support, don’t hesitate to obtain experienced legal help as soon as possible. Contact our office today for a consultation by calling (714) 740-2542.

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