Often, when couples decide to divorce or separate, one spouse will move out. They do so for a variety of reasons, but rarely are they financial. When one spouse moves out, another household will have to be maintained, especially if children are involved.

While it is not required one spouse move out at the point of separation, when and if they do, the courts have allowed for something called temporary spousal support.

Temporary Spousal Support

The courts may award this support to ensure the spouse in need has sufficient income to support him or herself along with their children. Generally, this kind of spousal support is ordered for the duration of the divorce proceedings, which can last as little as a few months to well over a year, depending on the complexity of your case. Temporary spousal support, like regular spousal support, is tax deductible to the payor and taxed as income to the payee. However, any financial support paid to one spouse while separated but still living together is not tax deductible to the payor, nor taxed to the payee.

If you have moved out and need support to maintain your household, you can make a request for temporary spousal support through your existing divorce or separation case. You can also request support if you are still living together but not in a house that is one spouse’s separate property or if you have a domestic violence case open.

If you do not yet have a case open, you will need to do so before making a request for temporary spousal support. To make this request, you need to file an Order to Show Cause and a financial statement called an Income and Expense Declaration.

In filing these, you will receive a court date and then can serve your spouse with the notice for the hearing. At this hearing, the judge will award the support amount, modify it or hold off on signing the order if more information is needed. Temporary spousal support is generally determined based off of financial need while long-term support is determined from many additional factors.

If you need help in filling out these forms or knowing how much support you will need, consult an experienced family law attorney. An attorney will be able to evaluate your case and get temporary support ordered as soon as possible.

Are you in Los Angles County and have some questions about beginning the divorce process and getting temporary spousal support? Certified Family Law Specialist Steve Fernandez has experience with complex divorces and can work to ensure you take the right first steps towards a favorable outcome. Call our office at 310-564-5710; email us at intake@cfli.com or contact us through our online form today to schedule a free consultation.