Are you thinking about filing for divorce? If you are the "lower-earning spouse," or if you are unemployed, a stay at home mom or dad, or a homemaker, then perhaps you're worried about how you're going to support yourself initially if you file for divorce. This is a common concern, and one reason why unhappy spouses delay their divorce filing.
If you are financially dependent on your spouse, or if you are the "out spouse," the spouse who doesn't handle the finances, then it's understandable why the prospect of ending your marriage may be a little nerve-wracking.
We want to assure you that this situation occurs regularly and it's not something that we're unfamiliar with.
Asking for Support During the Divorce Process
Afraid to file divorce because you don't know how you're going to support yourself? Worried that you won't get the kids because you don't have a job? It's okay, the court recognizes that spouses are often in these situations and that's why the California court system awards temporary orders for spousal support.
If you want to file for divorce, you can ask the court for a temporary order for spousal support while your divorce is pending through the courts. However, you can only ask for a temporary order for spousal support once you file your divorce case. You can also ask for child support.
You can ask for spousal support in the following cases:
- Legal separation
- Domestic violence restraining order
- Local child support agency
As a general rule, once you have started one of the above cases, then you can ask for spousal support. However, you cannot ask for spousal support in a paternity case.
If you're a victim of domestic violence, you can ask for spousal support when you ask the court for a domestic violence restraining order providing you are married to the person named in the restraining order.