During a marriage, parties create a life together, dependent on one or both of their incomes.  At times, it is appropriate for the court to order one person to pay the other spousal support, or alimony.  Spousal support may be limited in duration, or indefinite.

There are three types of spousal support under Oregon law:

Transitional spousal support:  This is awarded in a circumstance where someone is pursuing training or education to reenter the job market or advance his or her career options.

Compensatory spousal support: This is when one spouse has invested significant money, time, or some other resource in his or her spouse’s education, training or earning capacity.  For example, when someone works while putting his or her spouse through dental school, and uses resources he or she brought into the marriage to support the family for the duration of the educational program.

Maintenance spousal support:  Maintenance is to help the lower wage earner spouse continue with a lifestyle that is similar to that he or she enjoyed during the marriage.  This is often appropriate in longer-term marriages when one party has little chance of earning enough anything similar to the income the two parties shared.

Many factors are considered when determining whether spousal support is appropriate.  A non-exhaustive list includes:

  1. The length of the marriage
  2. Each party’s training, skills, and work experience
  3. The needs and resources of each party
  4. The age of each party
  5. The custodial and child support responsibilities of the parties

Spousal support is a complex, fact specific issue.  Summer Family Law has significant experience representing both men and women in alimony matters.  Contact us for help obtaining, challenging, or modifying spousal support awards.