San Jose Family Attorney Discusses Grounds for Termination of Spousal Support
Unless the parties have otherwise agreed in writing, a court-ordered spousal support obligation terminates upon either party’s death or the supported party’s remarriage. Said spousal support termination is self-executing, meaning no motion to terminate is required and therefore no court action is required. While no particular words are required to make spousal support nonterminable on account of either party’s death or the obligee’s remarriage, silence on the subject is not sufficient.
A supported spouse’s nonmarital cohabitation is not a terminating event unless expressly made so by the parties’ agreement or court ordered based thereon, although a modification of spousal support may be based on such grounds. Similarly, once a spousal support order ceases to exist by the obligee’s remarriage, it cannot be later “revived” if the supported spouse’s remarriage fails. This is questionable in cases where the remarriage was obtained by force as the thinking in such a situation is that there is no voluntary decision incident to the remarriage to forego spousal support from the prior spouse and rely instead on support from the new spouse. A supported party’s remarriage extinguishes a spousal support obligation from a prior marriage even if the remarriage is to the same former spouse. In limited circumstances, it may be proper for the court to consider the total length of the two marriages between the parties in determining the amount and duration of spousal support in the second proceeding.
If you or someone you know has questions about spousal support or other aspects of family law such as the divorce process, child support, or child custody and visitation, please contact Sagaria Law. Our team of family law attorneys can answer any such questions you may have and assist you through the process. We represent clients from Santa Clara County, Alameda County, Monterey County, San Mateo County, and surrounding areas. Contact our office today to schedule your free consultation to speak with one of our attorneys.