Spousal Support in Oregon

In the state of oregon, when a couple divorces or legally separates, a court may decide that one spouse or partner will have to pay the other a set amount of support money each month. This is called spousal support, or alimony. The money can be paid all at once or in installments.

There are three different types of spousal support in Oregon.

Transitional Spousal Support

Transitional spousal support is when one party pays for the other to attain an education or job training in order to help them reenter the job market and support themselves. This type of spousal support is also used to help the spouse collecting alimony prepare for a change in lifestyle or location.

Compensatory Spousal Support

Compensatory spousal support recognizes that one spouse may have made sacrifices beyond just financial to help the family. These sacrifices may put one party at a disadvantage when the marriage dissolves. This form of spousal support is designed to provide financial aid for the spouse that had a lower income during the marriage. It’s also to help the lower earning party if they are providing ongoing child care. Finally, compensatory spousal support is for those who are in financial need and who’s former partner has the ability to pay.

Spousal Maintenance

Spousal maintenance is a system of ongoing payments from one party to another. These payments are meant specifically to help the financially weaker party transition into a new financial position after the divorce or separation is finalized. Spousal maintenance is separate from child support or maintenance. Parties who will not be able to manage financially without the help of a partner are eligible to apply for spousal maintenance.

Paying and Modifying Spousal Support

When it comes to paying, modifying, or collecting spousal support, there are a few things to keep in mind.

Payment

The judge may order that the support be delivered in a lump-sum amount, made through periodic payments, or in the form of transfer of ownership over property. Periodic payments are the most common, and judges usually order monthly or quarterly payments. The parties involved will determine how those payments will be made and collected. 

A lump-sum payment is useful for those who are self-employed or have inconsistent income. This allows one party to make a one time payment and does not require any court intervention after that.

Modification

Modifying spousal support starts when either party asks the courts to change or terminate the spousal support payments. While the court will often hear these requests, changes or modifications are generally only made if one or both parties has experienced a major change in their circumstances from the time the court decision was first made. For those claiming or providing compensatory support, the spouse requesting a modification must be able to show a change that limits the paying spouse’s ability to pay support or earn an income. These changes may be involuntary, extraordinary, or unanticipated.

Taxes and Spousal Support

For spousal support cases that are finalized and agreed to on or before December 31, 2018, these payments are considered tax-deductible to the spouse that is paying, and must be counted as reportable income by the recipient. Alimony agreements and orders that are finalized on or after January 1, 2019 are affected by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which has eliminated the tax benefits and reporting requirements for spousal support.

Contact Bend’s Premier Family Attorneys

Struggling with spousal support? Need to modify or finalize your support payments? Our family attorneys in Bend may be able to help. Contact the Donahue Law Firm today. With a team of accomplished attorneys and years of experience, we’ll do everything in our power to offer you the fair representation you deserve.

Schedule your Low-Cost Consultation, Now: 541-241-6657, or visit the contact us page.