How to avoid paying spousal support – the purpose and essence of this blog post.
How to avoid paying spousal support guidance is not a way to trick your ex-spouse or avoid the law. Rather is a broad comprehensive approach to which aspect of life should be considered in deciding and calculating spousal support. Spousal support is payments made to minimize the negative unfair economic impact of divorce on the low income ( or non-wage-earning) ex-spouses until they are able to get to a level to be able to support themselves.
As we discussed in our calculating alimony in California article, there are Support Guidelines for temporary spousal support and certain factors ( family code section 4320 for permanent spousal support.
In practice, the permanent spousal support is calculated a little lower than support calculated under Support Guidelines
How to avoid paying spousal support- protect yourself in advance prenuptial and postnuptial agreement.
The best way of how to avoid paying spousal support is to take care of it before the marriage even starts by executing a prenuptial agreement with the spousal support provisions. You can still take care of protecting yourself in advance if you are already married by executing the postnuptial agreement. The only you need to be sure that the agreement I satisfied all legal requirements to be valid and enforcement of the provision waiving spousal support is not unconscionable. That means it would be very unfair to enforce the provisions of the waiver. Such that enforcement would be shocking for a reasonable person. An example of such could be that at the time of the divorced husband is making $17000/month, highly educated and experienced and his wife was taking care of kids during 14 years of marriage without any education, experience, and ability to earn. The provision in the prenuptial or postnuptial agreement regarding spousal support waiver would be unconscionable under those circumstances and not enforceable.
How to avoid paying spousal support- if your ex-spouse is cohabitating.
Another way How to avoid paying spousal support is to prove your spouse is in cohabitation with boyfriend/girlfriend. Though there is no strict definition for “Cohabitation” in California courts and it has only broadly been defined by courts meaning it will likely be up to the individual court to decide. Though it is mostly used to refer to an intimate relationship where the former spouse lives with someone else and used their address as their primary residence long term. According to California Family Code 4323(a)(1) cohabitation may be justification for the court to change or determine alimony.
How to avoid paying spousal support- your ex- or soon to be ex- has a drug addict lifestyles
Another possible method of how to avoid paying spousal support it to prove that your spouse has a drug addict lifestyle. The purpose of spousal support is to cover the person’s basic needs and maintain the level of living close to the level during the marriage. If the spousal support is going to be spent on drugs, the purpose of the spousal support is not accomplishing.
The Judge may modify or choose to not award alimony to the spouse who is addicted to drugs or recreational prescriptions. Though this does not always mean that there will not be any spousal support, In some cases a Judge may choose to pay the alimony directly to the expenses such as to pay rent directly rather than in cash so the spouse cannot buy drugs. It is also possible for the court to enable certain elements of alimony depending on steps completed to achieve sobriety such as enrolling in a drug counseling program, treatment, or other steps, or in some extreme cases the judge may require the spouse to check into a rehabilitation facility before they can receive alimony. Proof must be submitted if you believe your spouse has addiction issues that need treatment which can include things like arrest records, pictures of the controlled substances, and/or pictures or videos of your spouse under influence. Witnesses can also help determine the situation. Though this solution is not a reliable solution as it does not often stop alimony and in fact, the sober spouse may need to help pay for the screenings and even treatment of the sober spouse until the spouse becomes able to support themselves and may have other increased costs for alimony.
How to avoid paying spousal support- look at the standard of ex-spouse’s living.
The most common mistake clients are making is assuming that if the ex-spouse’s income has increased after the marriage significantly, they are entitled to higher spousal support. That is not always correct. If your spouse is currently living within the standard which existed within the marriage, they are not entitled to additional alimony in many cases. In addition, if your spouse is making the amount of money to afford to live like they did during the marriage after the divorce, she/he might not be entitled to any spousal support. This is one of the best way approach how to avoid paying spousal support in the light of the purpose of spousal support. As we have addressed above the purpose of spousal support is to help a spouse at a disadvantage who is unable to support themselves, if they are able to support themselves to the same extent that they did during the marriage, they are not in a disadvantaged situation and thus do not receive spousal support.
How to avoid paying spousal support – look at your fluctuating income if you are self-employed.
Sometimes self-employed individuals are not capable of properly analyze their own situation if they are running their own business with a highly fluctuating income. Apparently, they cannot afford to pay spousal support in slow time frame of their business or because business expenses are too high. The calculation would get more complex if supporting spouse is receiving in additional bonuses or distributions.
The solution is to work with forensic accountants and family law attorney in estimating a reasonable bases for spousal support. If the numbers show that you are in a worse or less stable situation than your spouse, that would the answer to your question about how to avoid paying spousal support.