Marital Standard of Living

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When a California family court looks to determine the amount and duration of spousal support for a petitioning party, the marital standard of living is the base reference point from which to begin calculations. Many people often have questions about how this is determined and what impact it will play on the outcome of any financial settlement in a divorce.

At the law office of Thomas E. Bouman, Attorney at Law, located in Santa Clara, California, we have extensive experience when it comes to assessing and using the marital standard of living component when helping clients negotiate balanced solutions during their divorce actions. To learn more about this standard and how we can help you, please contact our office today to schedule a complimentary phone consultation.

Establishing what the marital standard of living for a particular couple is often based on looking at the income upon which support was based on, the marital lifestyle the couple enjoyed and the duration of the marriage. The courts have held that “the marital standard of living is intended by the Legislature to mean the general station in life enjoyed by the parities during their marriage.”

This is not a mathematical calculation like child support, but it is more an evaluation of how the parties lived and an attempt to structure a financial settlement that allows both sides to continue to live in the same matter they did when married.t

The court will also look at the same factors that are used to determine spousal support as well as other supporting documentation supplied by both spouses. This includes the health, age, wealth and education of the each party. Typically, the court will also only look at last five years of marriage when making a marital standard of living determination. For instance, if a couple was married for 20 years, the court will look at the lifestyle that was maintained in years 16-20. The court will specifically look at expenditures and savings made during the marriage during this time frame.

Additionally, motion courts have found that the marital standard of living is an essential component in the changed circumstances analysis when reviewing a support payment modification application. However, one spouse’s increased financial position that occurs after a marriage will not be taken into account by the courts when a spouse applies for an increase to spousal support.

Contact a Skilled San Jose Alimony Attorney for a Free Phone Consultation

If you want to protect yourself and the lifestyle you have enjoyed during the course of your marriage, we can help you understand what legal protections you can use under current California law. With over 25 years of experience, Santa Clara spousal support lawyer, Thomas E. Bouman is ready to help you get your life back in balance and negotiate a fair outcome that will help you comfortably move into the future after your divorce.

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To get answers to your questions and a complete explanation of your options during a divorce, contact skilled divorce attorney Thomas E. Bouman. Our office offers a free initial phone consultation to discuss your situation in a private setting.