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Rancho Bernardo, California

2014 Rancho Bernardo Legal Resources: Useful Tips On Alimony Modifications

Many things about a divorce decree and the subsequent orders of the court can be complicated and difficult to understand. Modification of alimony is no exception. This article is intended to provide you with a simplified legal resource to help you understand some of the nuances of alimony modifications.

According to California family law courts, spousal support or orders for alimony can be modified at any time during the support period unless otherwise agreed upon by the parties. However, unlike child support awards, modification of spousal support is entirely dependent on the terms of the court’s order. Additionally, in most instances post-judgment spousal support is limited to the stated duration of time dictated by the court order. Moreover, once the Court has “terminated its jurisdiction” and the support is no longer required, the supported spouse cannot return to court to extend spousal support.

It should be noted that in cases where “step-down” spousal support orders have been provided, the supported spouse is able to petition the court for an extension of support as long as they file their request prior to the termination date for their support.

California statute provides that for marriages less than 10 years, there is a presumption that support should be granted for a period equal to half the length of the marriage. However, courts look at standards that terminate spousal support after a “reasonable period of time.” Every marriage is different and requires individual analysis by the courts, but courts tend to disfavor “lifetime support.”

Another common occurrence regarding the modification of alimony and support orders is a court issued “Gavron Warning”. Such a warning requires that the supported spouse make reasonable efforts to become self-supporting within a reasonable period of time after the dissolution of the marriage. Failure to comply with a “Gavron Warning” is grounds for terminating support.

Individual circumstances and facts vary from case to case. Nothing in this article should be construed as legal advice. Any and all questions about divorce, support or family law should be directed to a qualified and experienced family law attorney.

About Rancho Bernardo:

Rancho Bernardo is located next to Rancho Santa Fe about 20 miles north-north-east of downtown San Diego. It is a master-planned community immediately north of Carmel Mountain Ranch, northwest of the city of Poway, and south of Escondido. Typical of new San Diego community development, Rancho Bernardo consists of business parks, residential areas, and golf courses. During the summer, there is an annual carnival-type street fair in Rancho Bernardo called "RB! Alive." Rancho Bernardo is also home to the corporate headquarters of Sony US.

Residents of Rancho Bernardo are likely to use the Ramona Branch Court or the North County Regional Center. The North County Regional Center is a full service branch court shared by the Superior Court, Sheriff, Probation, District Attorney, Revenue and Recovery, and the Board of Supervisors. Currently the Court hears Criminal, Civil, Family Law, Probate, Small Claims, Appeal, Adoption, Traffic and Minor Offense cases.

About Doppelt and Forney, APLC:

Since our offices opened, we have handled numerous matters dealing with family law in most San Diego communities. As such, our attorneys have a long history of handling divorce and annulment matters. We know your choices are extensive when it comes to San Diego legal options, but we are experienced in a wide variety of legal matters involving many of the more common aspects of family law. Call our offices today to discuss your individual circumstances and we will formulate a plan to help you with your specific case.

Conveniently located within Rancho Bernardo, our office sits on Ranch Bernardo Drive in the Clock Tower Office Complex. Our office is on the second floor on the north-west corner of the complex. We observe legal holidays and are open 8am to 5pm. Contact us online or reach our attorneys at 858-312-8500 to schedule a confidential legal consultation where we can discuss your legal matter further.

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