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  • Writer's pictureJames Chau

Permanent Spousal Support and Self Employed Business

Updated: Oct 17, 2022

Here’s a recent article regarding the Court’s process of estimating support.

In many divorce cases the Court has to estimate the future income of the party who will be paying spousal support in order to determine the amount of support to be paid. When a person has been employed for the same company for several years, it can be fairly easy to estimate that person’s future income. However, it is difficult to estimate if the party is self-employed and the monthly rate of income fluctuates.

The article cites a case where during the marriage, the husband and the wife owned a real estate and development business. Several years before the divorce, the wife estimated that the parties earned income of about $30,000 per month. The husband claimed because of the uncertain real estate climate, he wanted to retire and live off the income of a farm the parties owned in Alabama (net income for the farm was approximately $25,000 per year).

In the end, the court awarded $4,000 per month in spousal support to the wife. The trial court based its award on income that the husband stated was from a one-time sale of real property property.

The husband later appealed the trial court’s decision. The Court of Appeals agreed with the wife that an award of spousal support was appropriate because of her health and because of the husband’s greater earning capacity, but the court agreed with the husband that $4,000 a month was too approximate an amount. The court stated that, “in order for the court to make an award of support, there must be evidence of the obligor spouse’s future earning potential and ability to pay.”

Speculation was an important issue that the appeals court raised. They determined that it was speculative to find that the husband could earn that much income in the future and there was no evidence to support that finding. According to the article, it cites that it’s very important to provide the court with enough information so that there is evidence to base any decision of spousal support upon.

If there are any legal questions you may have, I encourage you to, please contact my San Jose Divorce Lawyers office. My San Jose Family Lawyer offices assists many people who are going through family law related issues. We have many Affordable San Jose Divorce Lawyer solutions for many different budgets. We help many individuals through this very chaotic period in their life. Proudly serving the following cities, Fremont, Milpitas, Los Gatos, Cupertino, Mountain View, and Santa Clara.

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