We handle a lot of divorce cases in California every month an so come across a lot of different issues.
If you do your homework, you will learn that California considers any marriage over 10 years to be of long term. As this pertains to spousal support, the Courts say that long term marriages have indefinite jurisdiction over spousal support.
What this means is that the Court will have the jurisdiction to award Spousal Support indefinitely when the marriage is over 10 years.
So here is the question.
- How do you terminate spousal support on long term marriages when the parties agree that they want to do so?
First, I must state that we are not a law office and not attorneys. We just process a high volume of divorce cases in California. We cannot recite the law or give advice, we are simply explaining what we have come across and how we have handled it.
So for the first question. How to terminate spousal support on long term marriages when the parties agree. What we have done is to have both the parties sign a waiver. This is a waiver we drafted and include it in the judgment on the spousal support order part of the judgment.
We simply make sure to cover the reasons spousal support can normally be requested or modified. We say the parties agree to terminate spousal support and that the order terminating spousal support is non-modifiable by either party for any reason and that regardless of future needs of spousal support or ability to pay spousal support, the court cannot make orders for spousal support.
If the parties stipulate to terminate spousal support on long term marriages, the courts will generally sign off on this.
Depending on the Court, they may reject the judgment. We have had some Judges state that they will not approve agreements that violate the law. They have told us that in long term marriages, the Court will retain jurisdiction indefinitely, you remarry or die.
So it appears it will depend on the Judge if you can get them to approve the judgment terminating spousal support on your long term marriage.
If you find your judgment getting rejected for this reason, one last thing you can do is file a motion (Request For Order) to enter judgment. In the motion you can request the court grant your judgment to terminate spousal support. You and your spouse can attend the hearing and explain to the court that you are willingly giving up this right.
We would love to hear any feedback from folks who have done this or attorneys who have had other successes.
We are a licensed and bonded legal document preparation firm that specializes in divorce. We are headquartered in Los Angeles, CA and serve all the Courts in California.