Riverside, CA asked in Divorce and Family Law for California

Q: How long does spousal support typically continue in cases of long-term marriages?

While I understand that the code states that spousal support continues until the death of either party or the remarriage of the supported party for cases of long-term marriages, I know the supporting spouse could request that spousal support be terminated or reduced at some point. I'm wondering what happens in most cases where there had been a long-term marriage? Do you see spousal support continuing until death in most cases or do judges typically order a step down or termination of support at some point?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Indy G. Colbath
Indy G. Colbath
Answered
  • Walnut Creek, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: Post-dissolution litigation of spousal support is one of the most difficult and expensive undertakings in family law. For long term marriages, the law states that there is a presumption of permanent support, until the death of either party, or the remarriage of the supported spouse. Courts do recognize that circumstances change, including but not limited to the paying spouse retiring, the recipient spouse moving in with a new partner, the recipient spouse earning more money, etc. Ultimately, the trial judge has discretion on whether or not to order a modification or termination. You should consult with a local attorney to obtain their opinion about your matter.

Answering this question does not constitute legal advice, guarantee any outcomes, nor does it constitute the formation of an attorney-client relationship.

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