Spousal Support and Alimony

//Spousal Support and Alimony
Spousal Support and Alimony 2017-07-12T16:37:32+00:00

Spousal Support and AlimonySpousal support varies from state to state. For most states, support is very fact dependent.  Here are some of the factors:

How long were you married? 
Did both parties work and contribute to the household budget? 
What is the capacity to earn? 
Are there any special medical or psychological limiting factors? 

Most states to do not have a preset formula or calculation for spousal support.  However, some of the above questions are customary in all states. Genesis Mediation will help you resolve disputes surrounding spousal support regardless of the state.

In Oregon, spousal support comes in three forms:

  • Compensatory – When a spouse has significantly assisted the other in attaining the standard of living both enjoy.
  • Transitional – Transitional support is awarded as needed for a party to attain education and training necessary to allow for reentry into the job market or for advancement in their current position.  The factors to be considered by the court in awarding transitional spousal support include but are not limited to:
    • The duration of the marriage
    • A party’s training and employment skills
    • A party’s work experience
    • The financial needs and resources of each party
    • The tax consequences to each party
    • A party’s custodial and child support responsibilities
    • Any other factors the court deems just and equitable
  • Maintenance – The most common type of support is spousal maintenance or alimony.  It is mainly for an equitable distribution of the future earnings of the parties in order to address the standard of living.  The court may award Spousal Maintenance as a contribution by one spouse to the support of the other for either a specific or an indefinite time period.  The factors to be considered by the court in awarding spousal maintenance include but are not limited to:
    • The duration of the marriage
    • The age of the parties
    • The health of the parties, including their physical, mental and emotional condition
    • The standard of living established during the marriage
    • The relative income and earning capacity of the parties, recognizing that the wage earner’s continuing income may be a basis for support distinct from the income that the supported spouse may receive from the distribution of marital property
    • A party’s training and employment skills
    • A party’s work experience
    • The financial needs and resources of each party
    • The tax consequences to each party
    • A party’s custodial and child support responsibilities
    • Any other factors the court deems just and equitable

These are very brief descriptions.  A wide variety of elements come into play to determine spousal support.  Consulting an attorney to determine a range of spousal support is very helpful in mediation for both parties. Spousal support is one of the most controversial points in divorce.  In mediation, our goal is allowing both parties to move forward in positive directions with sufficient financial resources.  A spouse may feel she or he desires more support, but the actual financial resources can only allow a predetermined amount.  Parties are supporting two households instead of one. 

Cash flow budgets become very important in determining spousal range of support.  In the end, spousal support comes down to a figure of how much for how long.  Support can be modified due to a substantial change of circumstance. 

Modification usually happens surrounding remarriage or a significant change in financial resources. Not all spouses will desire or seek support.  Some couples have equally contributed to the marital resources over the course of the marriage.  They have similar earnings or earning power and therefore usually do not seek or desire support. In mediation, spousal support is usually the last item discussed. 

As mediators, we find it helpful to build a relationship with both of you before working on what usually becomes the most difficult piece to find resolution.  In more extreme situations, attorneys may be used with a mediator in a settlement conference to conclude any settlement plus child and spousal support issues. Genesis Mediation offers a FREE 15 Minute Phone Consultation.

Genesis Mediation offers a FREE 15 Minute Phone Consultation.  We are here to help you and get your questions about spousal support and alimony answered.  Please call (503) 352-9447.  Spousal Support and Alimony are also discussed at our Divorce Options Workshops.

Tigard, Oregon

7307 SW Beveland St.
Suite 200
Tigard, Oregon 97223

Local: (503) 352-9447
Toll Free: (888) 945-6679
Fax: (503) 620-5187

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