Santa Ana, CA asked in Divorce and Family Law for California

Q: Can you file for spousal support after case closed

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2 Lawyer Answers
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Sacramento, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: Under California law, once a divorce case is finalized and the judgment is entered, it generally sets the terms for issues like spousal support. If the final divorce judgment did not award spousal support, it's usually not possible to file for it after the case is closed.

However, there are exceptions. If there's a significant change in circumstances, you might be able to modify the terms of the divorce judgment. This includes changes in financial situations for either party. Oftentimes, the Court will write that it will "reserve jurisdiction" on the issue of spousal support so that the Court can modify it at a later time. That would typically be reflected in the FL-180 - the judgment on the divorce.

It's important to consult with a lawyer to understand your specific situation. They can provide guidance on whether a modification is possible and advise on the best course of action.

Remember, every case is unique, and the details of your situation will significantly influence the options available to you. Legal guidance is crucial in navigating these complex issues effectively.

Tobie B. Waxman
Tobie B. Waxman
  • Culver City, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: Depends on what you mean by “case closed”. Dismissed? Or are you now post judgment? If judgment has been entered, whether you can now ask for support depends on what your judgment says. Was support waived? Was the issue of support reserved? Have an attorney review the terms of your judgement and then advise you on what your rights or options may be.

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