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The Right Representation Matters

When a couple legally separates or divorces, the court may order one spouse or domestic partner to pay the other a certain amount of support money each month. Commonly known as alimony, this is also referred to as “spousal support” for married couples and “partner support” in domestic partnerships.

During a divorce or legal separation, two types of alimony are ordered by the Courts, temporary spousal support and permanent spousal support. They both are utilized for different reasons.

The higher-earning spouse pays temporary spousal support to the lower-earning spouse during the divorce action. The purpose of temporary spousal support is generally set to an amount that maintains the status quo.

Permanent spousal support is alimony that is paid after the entry of judgment. To create an order for this, the court will look at  Family Code §4320. Some of the factors that are examined are: 


  • the marital standard of living,

  • party’s income or earning capacity,

  • the supporting spouse’s ability to pay,

  • the supported spouse’s needs,

  • the marital estate’s assets and debts,

  • the length of the marriage,

  • the age and health of the parties,

  • and whether there was any documented history of domestic violence 


Spousal support/partner support is a complicated legal issue with many considerations. At Law Office James Chau, we can help you navigate this complex process.  We will help you understand how long the support may last, help you calculate spousal/partner support accurately, and advocate for you in the process.

The Law Office of James Chau, P.C., represents clients in San Jose, California, and all surrounding areas.

For more information and to schedule a personal consultation with the Law Offices of James Chau, P.C., don't hesitate to contact us online or call our San Jose, California office at (408) 899-8364.

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