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Am I eligible for spousal support?

1 Answers. Asked on Apr 24th, 2012 on Divorce - California
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I have been married for over 3 years and am currently separated (not legally). During my 3 years of marriage I was moving from state to state and raising our child alone, my husband was in the military. I was a stay at home wife and mother and would like to know how or if I qualify for spousal support. I have no job experience and have not been able to get a job. I am a full time student now and I am also the primary care provider for our two year old son.
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Answered on Apr 25th, 2012 at 4:12 PM

Generally, if you are married, either party may qualify for spousal support (alimony) upon filing for a Dissolution. It is based upon the incomes of both parties, as well as the standard of living during the marriage.  Since you are unemployed and have not worked during the marriage, you would probably receive child AND spousal support. Since you have only been married 3 years, you have what is referred to as a short term marriage (less than 10 years) and if you obtained spousal support, it would generally be for 1/2 the length of the marriage.  You would need to file for a Dissolution (divorce) or Legal Separation and then set a Order to Show Cause hearing to obtain a temporary support order.

This response is general in nature and should not be considered legal advice.



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Ending a marriage is more than just an emotional process--it's also a legal process. The court must approve your "dissolution of marriage" petition, and will also rule on issues related to the division of property, alimony (also known as spousal support or maintenance), child custody and child support. A divorce or family law attorney can help guide you through the divorce process, while also negotiating with your soon-to-be ex-spouse and his or her divorce lawyer. It's important to note that ethics laws prohibit the same law firm or attorney from representing both spouses in a divorce. Even if your divorce is an amicable one, it's critical to have your own legal representation to ensure that you're treated fairly at all stages of the divorce proceeding.
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