Who qualifies for spousal support?
One of the most challenging aspects of post-divorce life is finding financial security on a single income. For this reason, it may be appropriate for a spouse facing divorce to seek spousal support. In British Columbia, some former partners even qualify for spousal support if they were not married. However, they have a limited amount of time to apply for this benefit after a separation.
Seeking support you deserve
According to the Family Law Act, partners who were married or who lived together in a marriage-like relationship for two years or more may seek spousal support. However, it is important to know that, unlike child support, there is no guarantee the court will grant support payments to a former spouse or partner. Some factors the court will consider when determining one’s eligibility for support include the following:
- Any financial sacrifices one partner made during the relationship
- Moves the couple might have made to further one partner’s career
- The training or education one partner needs to return to the workforce
- The difference in standards of living between the two partners after the breakup
- The time it will take for one partner to reach self-sufficiency after the separation
Anyone seeking spousal support will have several items to negotiate, such as the amount of support, how long they will receive payments and the method of payment. Because of the complications and uncertainties surrounding spousal support, it is wise for separating partners to seek legal counsel to improve the chances of a positive financial future.