How long will a spouse have to pay (or be able to receive) alimony?

Long Spouse Alimony Family-Law

How long will a spouse have to pay (or be able to receive) alimony?

Depending on the particular circumstances, alimony is ordered to be paid during the time period that the supported spouse is seeking education, training, and marketable job skills in order to establish a career or otherwise become self-supportive. Consideration of the responsibility for providing child care during the early years of a minor child factors into this determination.

If the supported spouse is of advanced age or suffers from a medical problem which would prevent this spouse from obtaining a career (thus preventing him/her from becoming self-supportive), alimony could be “permanent” (but subject to future modification based upon a material change in circumstances).

If there was a long term marriage (in California, for example, a marriage of ten years or longer is considered a long term marriage), a court may have continuing jurisdiction over the issue of spousal support. With continuing jurisdiction, a court may change the amount or duration of alimony payments from one spouse to the other any time in the future (although a material change in circumstances is usually necessary).

In addition, typically a court order for alimony terminates upon the death or remarriage of the supported spouse.

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