What’s the Difference Between Child Support and Spousal Support?

There are many differences between child support and spousal support. Although child support is ordered in many cases where there are children involved, child support can also be ordered without spousal support being present. Spousal support involves only the need to provide financial assistance to a former spouse or partner after they have separated or divorced, whereas child support is paid to help provide for the child.

One of the main differences between child support and spousal support is that child support payments are typically set by law, whereas spousal support payments are not. Child support typically varies depending on the income of each party involved in child custody, or according to state guidelines. This means that a child support order is usually created and paid by law, whereas spousal support can vary depending on the agreement of each party.

Another key difference between child support and spousal support is that child support payments are made until child support is no longer necessary. Spousal support typically ends either when a spouse remarries or engages in another relationship, or when a child is no longer financially dependent on the other parent.

A child support order is made with the best interests of the child in mind. Child support payments are based on each parent’s income after taxes and expenses. Spousal support orders are also typically created with child rearing responsibilities in mind, but spousal support can also be paid to a non-working spouse after child rearing years have ended. Child support is for the child, whereas spousal support is more often given out of necessity rather than a child’s needs.

Child support and spousal support are very different, but they are both legal obligations that one person has to another person. Child support is for child rearing expenses, and spousal support is to help with living expenses. Child support does not end when child rearing ends, whereas spousal support typically ends at remarriage or after 15 years of spousal separation status. Child support varies according to income and state guidelines, but spousal support typically varies depending on the agreement of each party.

For more information about child support and spousal support orders, child custody orders, child support enforcement services, child support modification orders, and child support payment information (including late fees and interest charges), please contact Monarch Family Law at monarchfamilylaw.com or (714) 492-1989.