Support is twofold – Child Support and Spousal Support. Child Support in California is based on a guideline amount that is determined by putting financial information into a computer program that then calculates what the support will be. This same program is used to determine Temporary Spousal Support while Permanent Spousal Support requires a determination (generally by a trial) of the 14 factors set forth in California Family Code, Section 4320. The determination of Guideline Child Support may seem to be straightforward, yet in actuality the final number is based on the calculations that are actually input into the program including each party’s income; tax filing status; timeshare with the children; health insurance; union dues; child care; and other various information that may be beneficial to your calculations. Ascertaining the accurate information to input into the formula can often be an overwhelming job to someone without the everyday experience in ensuring the accurate information is relayed. Spousal Support is one of the most litigated areas of Family Law. The idea behind Spousal Support is to allow the spouses to maintain a similar lifestyle to that experienced during the parties’ marriage. This is accomplished by Orders of Temporary Spousal Support and Permanent Spousal Support. The Temporary Spousal Support Order is generally requested during the divorce proceedings and based upon the parties’ income and expenses. Permanent Spousal Support is generally determined after a Court Trial hearing evidence related to the fourteen separate factors set forth in Family Code, Section 4320 and including issues such as need and ability to pay; length of the marriage; earning potential; standard of living, education, work experience; health, age; other similar issues and balancing factors related to the division of marital assets will all be considered. The Court will then take this information and use its discretion to determine the amount of support and its duration. While the Court will make Child Support Guideline Orders and Temporary Spousal Support Orders based on a computer program, the same cannot be said for Permanent Spousal Support where the Court is required to use its broad discretion. It is vital that you have an advocate protecting your interests in this area to assure you are either receiving or paying the appropriate amount of support. The Law Office of Kerri Lynn Anderson is highly-skilled in conducting discovery and obtaining the information necessary to determine the actual income of the other party and the evidence necessary to determine accurate Child Support Orders, Temporary Spousal Support Orders, and Permanent Support Orders.

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