Worried About Spousal Support After A Divorce During The Pandemic?

3 August 2020
 Categories: , Blog


Is one of the things holding you back from getting a divorce that you are worried about having to pay spousal support and losing your job during this pandemic? If so, know that this is not something that should prevent you from getting a divorce. Here is what you need to know about the impact of losing your job on future spousal support. 

Spousal Support Is Based On Current Income Levels

If you are the high earner compared to your spouse, know that spousal support will be based on your current income levels, not what you were making in the past. If you are currently making less money at your job due to wage cuts, your current wages will be factored into your spousal support.

Worried about losing your job in the future? If this were to happen later on in the pandemic, you could petition to have spousal support updated to reflect that you are unemployed involuntarily and now making less money. You may find yourself in a situation where you are not being offered spousal support by a spouse that is the higher income earner.

Keep in mind that income levels will be analyzed at the time of your trial and not when you file. If your employment situation gets worse by the time it comes to make a decision on spousal support, your income at the time is what is considered. Don't let your potential lack of income in the future stop you from getting a divorce for this reason.

Spousal Support Could Be Negotiated Due To Potential Future Income

Another thing to keep in mind is that your spousal support could be negotiated if there is a chance that your income could go down in the future. If you are currently employed in a field that is struggling due to the pandemic, you can use this to your advantage. For example, if you work for a business that could be shut down if your state has to close down again and cases for COVID-19 are trending upward. 

On the flip side of all this, your spouse's job security can also play into negotiating spousal support. If they work in a relatively safe field and are able to work from home, with no rumblings of job cuts or furloughs, a judge could recognize that your spouse needs less support than what they are seeking to receive from the divorce.

A family law attorney can help you understand the nuances of spousal support agreements.