Can I Divorce My Spouse in California if I am Not Working?

Sat 23rd April, 2022 Family Law

Many families have one spouse who earns an income while the other spouse contributes at home. When a non-working spouse wishes to file for divorce, one of the most common questions that our office is asked is whether they can afford to divorce their spouse? At the Law Office of Bradley S. Sandler in Beverly Hills, I can help you navigate the process, even if you are the non-working spouse. To learn more about your legal options, call or contact our office to schedule a case consultation.

Petition for Temporary Support

In order to cover your immediate costs after filing for divorce, a non-working spouse can petition the court for temporary spousal support. Temporary alimony provides for a spouse’s expenses and maintains their standard of living while the divorce is ongoing, including payment for your attorney’s fees. This ensures that both spouses, even if one is non-working, have the legal representation they need during a divorce.

Division of Marital Property

California is a community property state, which means that all marital property is split equally, 50/50, between spouses in a divorce. Whether or not a spouse earns an income has no effect on the distribution of property between a couple; however, whether or not a non-working spouse intends to reenter the workforce could impact what assets they wish to retain in the division of property. For example, if the expenses to maintain the primary residence are too great, a non-working spouse may wish to keep other property acquired during the course of the marriage.

Spousal Support

Once the divorce is finalized, a non-working spouse can also receive ongoing spousal support. California offers rehabilitative and permanent support once a divorce is complete. For a non-working spouse that wishes to reenter the workforce, rehabilitative alimony covers expenses while that spouse gets the education or training they need. A plan must be submitted with the court, but once approved the alimony can help maintain a standard of living while you transition to financial independence.

For spouses that cannot reenter the workforce, permanent alimony may be awarded to help support a non-working spouse. Age, disability, and caring for a family member with special needs are common reasons why a person may not be able to work after a divorce, and permanent alimony provides them with the financial help they need until the spouse receiving support remarries or either spouse dies. To learn more, call or contact our office today.

Call or Contact Our Office

Are you interested in learning more about filing for divorce in Los Angeles and have concerns because you are the non-working spouse? At the Law Office of Bradley S. Sandler, I can walk you through all your legal options. Call the office or contact us today to speak with a lawyer and schedule a consultation of your case.