In some instances, spousal support can be an easy matter to determine, particularly if both parties can readily come to an agreement. However, because emotion generally factors strongly into divorce matters, it is more often the case that spousal support is determined by the family court. In order to ensure that your interests are served, you should have a knowledgeable attorney in your corner as you proceed.
Factors Affecting Spousal Support
The Code of Virginia §20-107.1 establishes factors that are to be considered in determining spousal support. These include:
- Standard of living of the spouse
- Debts and assets
- Age and health of both parties
- Each spouse’s earning capacity
- Length of time married
The goal is to arrive at a figure that is equitable and fair to both parties. As such, various ways of calculating the support figure can be used, including computer programs. Your attorney will help you get an amount you can live with.
If a court determines the spousal support figure, this can be modified. Indeed, the needs of the spouse receiving support are bound to change over time, whether by another marriage, job promotion, etc., and therefore you can expect the figure to be modified at some point.