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What Factors Does a Judge Consider in San Diego for Spousal Support Orders Both Temporary and Permanent in a Divorce or Legal Separation?

What is the Difference Between Permanent and Temporary Spousal Support Orders in San Diego Superior Court?

In San Diego, there are two procedural postures to any family law case whether it is a legal separation or divorces: pre judgment and post judgment. This procedural posture is determinative, in large part, as to how San Diego Judges determine the amount of spousal support and the duration. Pre judgment, which are always temporary orders pending trial or written agreement and a judgment of either divorce or legal separation, in San Diego can be calculated by a program called the Disso Master or by the Family Law Code Factors under Section 4320. The San Diego Judge has the option to choose. Many Judges, for the first order which can also be called a pendente lite order, use the Disso Master as this is considered the status quo. Post judgment, which are permanent orders after trial or judgment or written agreement, spousal support calculations are not per the Disso Master and, instead, by the Family Law Code Section 4320 factors which are listed in part below.

How is Temporary Spousal Support in San Diego Calculated?

The Disso Master program uses the gross income to calculate the net income and then calculates the final number for spousal support. Factors include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • tax filing status
  • number of federal tax exemptions
  • wages, salary, self employment income, other taxable income and other non taxable income
  • new mate income
  • spousal support paid to a previous spouse by court order
  • child support paid to a previous spouse by court order
  • health insurance
  • required union dues
  • mandatory retirement
  • interest and property tax deductions
How is Permanent Spousal Support in San Diego Determined?

Family Law Code Section 4320 is the seminal Family Code for permanent spousal support. Factors include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • the criminal conviction of an abusive spouse
  • balance of hardships to each party
  • specific and immediate tax consequences to each party
  • health and age of the parties
  • documented evidence of domestic violence against one of the parties
  • duration of marriage
  • needs of each party which is based on standard of living during marriage
  • ability of each spouse to support themselves
  • earning capacity of both parties
  • whether the supported party contributed to the career, education or training of the supporting spouse
  • any other factors the San Diego Superior Court Judge deems equitable

As such, there is discretion in the setting of permanent spousal support more than in the setting of temporary spousal support.

How Can a San Diego Law Firm Help Me With a Spousal Support Order?

Our law firm of Doppelt and Forney, APLC can help with the preparation of the Request for Order for spousal support as well as the filing/service and the court hearing. We will be with you every step of the way and have experience in the San Diego Court’s with spousal support motions. Please do not hesitate to call our office and set your appointment which is confidential and complimentary for the initial consultation.

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