Spousal support in adult couples

To make very short, how much or for how long?

I am writing to provide clarity on spousal support considerations for adult couples, particularly in navigating the complexities surrounding its calculation and duration. In general, my approach adheres to federal guidelines, with the primary focus on determining the appropriate amount and duration of spousal support. The fundamental purpose of spousal support is to assist the recipient who may be facing financial constraints, whether due to insufficient income to cover expenses or for compensatory reasons. There are primarily two categories to consider: non-compensatory and compensatory spousal support.

Non-compensatory support, in essence, is based on financial need. This extends beyond covering basic necessities and may encompass scenarios such as a decline in standard of living. However, my experience suggests that financial constraints, rather than lifestyle adjustments, tend to be the primary source of contention in this category. Common situations warranting non-compensatory support include childcare responsibilities, being the secondary earner, relocation for the spouse’s career, or supporting the other spouse’s education or business endeavors. 

Conversely, compensatory support revolves around compensating a spouse for economic sacrifices made during the marriage. This could entail forgoing personal career development to support the other spouse’s professional growth, managing household responsibilities, or accommodating frequent relocations for the partner’s career advancement.

 

Determining the duration of support payments involves evaluating factors such as the duration of the marriage and cohabitation, as well as the age of the support recipient. A crucial step in this process is the submission of comprehensive financial statements, facilitated by our Full Disclosure Agreement. This document outlines each party’s financial standing, including income, assets, expenses, and liabilities, serving as a foundation for calculating the appropriate support amount. Regarding the calculation itself, the support amount typically ranges from 1.5% to 2% of the difference between the parties’ gross incomes for each year of marriage. For instance, in a hypothetical scenario where Susan earns $60,000 annually, and Michael earns $30,000, with a 10-year marriage, Michael’s support payment could fall between $375 to $500 per month. The duration of support payments typically corresponds to 0.5 to 1 year for each year of the relationship. However, in cases of lengthy marriages exceeding 20 years or where the age of the dependent spouse plus the relationship duration. 

Determining the duration of support payments involves evaluating factors such as the duration of the marriage and cohabitation, as well as the age of the support recipient. A crucial step in this process is the submission of comprehensive financial statements, facilitated by our Full Disclosure Agreement. This document outlines each party’s financial standing, including income, assets, expenses, and liabilities, serving as a foundation for calculating the appropriate support amount. Regarding the calculation itself, the support amount typically ranges from 1.5% to 2% of the difference between the parties’ gross incomes for each year of marriage. 

I am writing to provide clarity on spousal support considerations for adult couples, particularly in navigating the complexities surrounding its calculation and duration. In general, my approach adheres to federal guidelines, with the primary focus on determining the appropriate amount and duration of spousal support. The fundamental purpose of spousal support is to assist the recipient who may be facing financial constraints, whether due to insufficient income to cover expenses or for compensatory reasons. There are primarily two categories to consider: non-compensatory and compensatory spousal support.

Non-compensatory support, in essence, is based on financial need. This extends beyond covering basic necessities and may encompass scenarios such as a decline in standard of living. However, my experience suggests that financial constraints, rather than lifestyle adjustments, tend to be the primary source of contention in this category. Common situations warranting non-compensatory support include childcare responsibilities, being the secondary earner, relocation for the spouse’s career, or supporting the other spouse’s education or business endeavors. 

Conversely, compensatory support revolves around compensating a spouse for economic sacrifices made during the marriage. This could entail forgoing personal career development to support the other spouse’s professional growth, managing household responsibilities, or accommodating frequent relocations for the partner’s career advancement.

For instance, in a hypothetical scenario where Susan earns $60,000 annually, and Michael earns $30,000, with a 10-year marriage, Michael’s support payment could fall between $375 to $500 per month. The duration of support payments typically corresponds to 0.5 to 1 year for each year of the relationship. However, in cases of lengthy marriages exceeding 20 years or where the age of the dependent spouse plus the relationship duration. 

I am writing to provide clarity on spousal support considerations for adult couples, particularly in navigating the complexities surrounding its calculation and duration. In general, my approach adheres to federal guidelines, with the primary focus on determining the appropriate amount and duration of spousal support. The fundamental purpose of spousal support is to assist the recipient who may be facing financial constraints, whether due to insufficient income to cover expenses or for compensatory reasons. There are primarily two categories to consider: non-compensatory and compensatory spousal support.

Non-compensatory support, in essence, is based on financial need. This extends beyond covering basic necessities and may encompass scenarios such as a decline in standard of living. However, my experience suggests that financial constraints, rather than lifestyle adjustments, tend to be the primary source of contention in this category. Common situations warranting non-compensatory support include childcare responsibilities, being the secondary earner, relocation for the spouse’s career, or supporting the other spouse’s education or business endeavors. 

Conversely, compensatory support revolves around compensating a spouse for economic sacrifices made during the marriage. This could entail forgoing personal career development to support the other spouse’s professional growth, managing household responsibilities, or accommodating frequent relocations for the partner’s career advancement.

Kelowna Divorce & Family Mediation Centre | Divorce, Couples, & Family Mediation Daniel Family Mediation Center family divorce couples mediation separation child support Kelowna BC

Daniel Mandelbaum

CERTIFIED FAMILY MEDIATOR – JUSTICE INSTITUTE OF BRITISH COLUMBIA

I discovered that I was born to mediate and collaborate, as I was – and still am – the individual that my friends and family call on to resolve any conflicts that may arise.

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