Spousal Support/Maintenance

If a married couple gets a divorce, the court may award spousal support or alimony to one. Not to be confused with marital property division, the decision varies from case-to-case.


The main aim of spousal support, also referred to as maintenance, is to reduce unfair financial effects on a spouse who does not have an income, or who earns a wage that is too low to sustain a basic lifestyle. This can happen if one partner decides to stay at home to take care of the couple’s children and needs time to develop job-worthy skills. In either case, regular spousal support can ensure you do not fall onto hard times and can provide for yourself.

Factors Involved in Spousal Support Rulings

In California, the following factors determine whether a spouse receives spousal support or not:

  • The earning abilities of the spouse under consideration
  • The financial, physical condition and age of the spouse
  • Standard of living (if the spouse that is to be paid alimony is used to a higher standard of living, the court may ask the other to pay more in spousal support)
  • The duration of the marriage
  • Whether the spouse that is paying alimony can support himself/herself after the separation
  • Whether a job would compromise the care of the children
  • Debts and property
  • The impact of tax on alimony


How I Handle Spousal Support/Maintenance Cases

Whether you are the payee spouse or the one who does not think he/she deserves to pay alimony, I can help you with legal support. With years practicing family law, I understand cases such as spousal support can be influenced by a number of factors. That is why before providing legal aid, I do my due diligence by:

  • Doing a thorough background check on the spouse who is to pay maintenance to determine how much they can reasonably pay
  • Determining whether the spouse that is to receive spousal support genuinely cannot support him or herself financially
  • Determining whether periodic payments or a lump sum would be feasible in case divorce proceedings are prolonged
  • Ensuring periodic alimony is paid on time each time and issuing the paying spouse a court order if they fail to regularly pay
  • Considering the needs of the child or children who belong to the couple to determine the amount that should be paid


How Spousal Support Works

The first thing you need to understand about spousal support is that it is gender neutral. In other words, both women and men are eligible to receive it if the court mandates it. The idea is not to enrich one spouse and impoverish the other. The aim is to create a balance that can allow both to retain a lifestyle that is the same before they got divorced.

However, in most cases the court awards spousal support to the lower earning spouse to ensure they can get back on their feet after the divorce.

Contact the Law Offices of Steve Whitworth

Divorce can be contentious, especially if spousal support is included. Whether you want your spouse to pay alimony or want to contest a spouse who is asking for it, you need a lawyer who specializes in family law on your side.

This is where the Law Offices of Steve Whitworth can prove invaluable. Contact us to get your FREE alimony consultation. During it we will go over the details of your case and determine a course of action that will be in your best interest. Call (916) 668-5970 today.





Our Office Locations:

Address: 1510 J. Street Ste. 125,
Sacramento, California 95814

Phone: (916) 668-5970

Address: 9245 Laguna Springs Drive, Ste 200,
Elk Grove, California 95758

Phone: (916) 668-5970


    1510 J. Street Ste. 125,
    Sacramento, California 95814

    9245 Laguna Springs Drive, Ste 200,
    Elk Grove, California 95758