California Spousal Support Lawyer
Modesto Alimony Attorney
When a marriage breaks up, whether or not one party needs to pay support or alimony to the other is determined by using state guidelines. These guidelines use the incomes of the spouses, the length of the marriage, and the ability of both spouses to support themselves to calculate the amount of support that is to be paid or received.
At the law office of Thomas P. Hogan in Modesto, California, Mr. Hogan will represent either the payor or the payee in spousal support matters. Contact him for any matter related to spousal support. An interpreter is available for Spanish-speaking clients. Call (209) 214-6600 for a free one-half hour initial consultation.
Considerations in calculating alimony
Spousal support is calculated using factors such as:
* Earning capacity
* Age and health of the spouses
* Length of the marriage
* Property owned
* Debts owed
* Child care considerations
* Domestic violence considerations
* Whether one spouse sacrificed for the career of the other
* Money management skills of each partner
Modification of spousal support
When the court orders spousal support, several factors are taken into consideration such as the standard of living, the duration of marriage, the paying spouse’s age, health, income, assets, earning capacity and all other circumstances provided in section 4320 of the Family Code.
The modification of spousal support is not easily granted by the court. Sufficient grounds must be present for the paying spouse to file a motion to modify the spousal support. There should be a substantial change in the income or the earning capacity of the paying spouse that would show his inability to pay for the spousal support.
In cases where the recipient spouse is earning more than the paying spouse, the court may reduce or terminate the spousal support obligation if deemed proper. If it is proven that the spouse who is burdened with the obligation to pay spousal support can no longer afford his financial obligations, the court may consider reducing the spousal support.
“Family Code Section 3591”
(a) Except as provided in subdivisions (b) and (c), the provisions of an agreement for the support of either party are subject to subsequent modification or termination by court order.
(b) An agreement may not be modified or terminated as to an amount that accrued before the date of the filing of the notice of motion or order to show cause to modify or terminate.
(c) An agreement for spousal support may not be modified or revoked to the extent that a written agreement, or, if there is no written agreement, an oral agreement entered into in open court between the parties, specifically provides that the spousal support is not subject to modification or termination.”
The paying spouse should seek the help of a competent counsel to file a motion to modify the terms and conditions of the spousal support ordered by the court.
Post Divorce Issues
The California Family Law Section 3422, says the tribunals of California will have to recognize the continuing and exclusive jurisdiction of the issuing tribunal of another state to modify its support orders.
“California Family Code Section 3422 (c) If a tribunal of another state has issued a child support order pursuant to the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act or a law substantially similar to that act which modifies a child support order of a tribunal of this state, tribunals of this state shall recognize the continuing, exclusive jurisdiction of the tribunal of the other state.”
“Rendering state’s exclusive, continuing jurisdiction: Generally, the state that made the initial child custody determination will have exclusive, continuing jurisdiction to modify the order. There cannot be “concurrent” UCCJEA modification jurisdiction. [Fam.C. §§ 3422, 3423]”
Likewise in the case In Re: Marriage of Barbara J. and Patrick J. Rassier, No. B145310, March 22, 2002, the Court ruled that once a court obtains jurisdiction over the parties in an action and enters an order in that action, the court retains jurisdiction to vacate, reverse, or modify.
Investigating to get at the facts
Attorney Hogan is also a CPA. His accounting background is extremely valuable to his clients. He uses investigators and forensic accountants to be sure that incomes and assets are reported correctly.
The end of alimony
Alimony or spousal support continues until the court-required end date, until the death or remarriage of one of the spouses, or until a court order terminating support is issued. If the circumstances of one party change, it is also possible to modify alimony orders.
Keeping an eye on legal costs
As an accountant, Mr. Hogan is always sensitive to the financial concerns of his clients. He works to keep the client’s legal expenses reasonable. He handles matters related to alimony and child support efficiently. He also recommends using alternative dispute resolution techniques, such as mediation and arbitration; these techniques are much less expensive than going to trial.
Contact a lawyer who is also an accountant
Attorney Thomas P. Hogan uses his 25 years of family law experience and his knowledge of finance to get the best possible outcome for clients in alimony matters. Contact his Modesto law office at (209) 214-6600.