Spousal support in Virginia is governed by Virginia Code § 20-107.1. As between spouses, the Circuit Court has the authority to award support from one spouse to the other.
When deciding on the type, amount, and length of a spousal support obligation, the Court is required to consider the following factors:
- The obligations, needs, and financial resources of the parties, including but not limited to income from all pension, profit-sharing, or retirement plans, of whatever nature
- The standard of living established during the marriage
- The duration of the marriage
- The age and physical and mental condition of the parties and any special circumstances of the family
- The extent to which the age, physical or mental condition, or special circumstances of any child of the parties would make it appropriate that a party not seek employment outside of the home
- The contributions, monetary and nonmonetary, of each party to the well-being of the family
- The property interests of the parties, both real and personal, tangible and intangible
- The provisions made concerning the marital property under § 20-107.3
- The earning capacity, including the skills, education, and training of the parties and the present employment opportunities for persons possessing such earning capacity
- The opportunity for, the ability of, and the time and costs involved for a party to acquire the appropriate education, training, and employment to obtain the skills needed to enhance his earning ability
- The decisions regarding employment, career, economics, education, and parenting arrangements made by the parties during the marriage and their effect on present and future earning potential, including the length of time one or both of the parties have been absent from the job market
- The extent to which either party has contributed to the attainment of education, training, career position, or profession of the other party
- Such other factors, including the tax consequences to each party and the circumstances and factors that contributed to the dissolution, specifically including any grounds for divorce, are necessary to consider the equities between the parties
As you can see from the list of factors above, there are significant considerations when determining spousal support. If you require support, it is wise to seek legal advice from one of our family law attorneys. We are prepared to assist in fighting for fair compensation and protecting your financial interests. Our firm will provide you with strategic advice for when you are ready to take the next step forward.