Spousal Support

Divorce and Family Law

What Is Spousal Support?

SPOUSAL SUPPORT IS DEFINED in Ohio as any payment(s) made to a spouse or former spouse for the benefit of that person. The payment is for sustenance and for support of the person. Many people refer to spousal support as alimony, as used to be the case in Ohio. Now, both terms have the same meaning.

Spousal support can be ordered during the pendency of a family law case. This type of support is known as temporary spousal support, since it only last while the case is pending. Spousal support can also be ordered after the termination of a family law case. This type of support is known as permanent spousal support, since it continues after the termination of the marriage. Spousal support can be paid to either the husband or wife, per the court’s order in a case. A skilled divorce lawyer should always be consulted regarding the issue of spousal support in Ohio.

How Is Spousal Support Determined In Ohio?


A FAMILY LAW COURT, in a divorce, dissolution, or legal separation, has the power to determine if spousal support is appropriate and reasonable. In determining whether spousal support is appropriate and reasonable, and in determining the nature, amount, terms of payment, and duration of spousal support, the court shall consider all of the following factors:

  1. The income of the parties, from all sources, including, but not limited to, income derived from property divided, disbursed, or distributed under section 3105.171 of the Revised Code;
  2. The relative earning abilities of the parties;
  3. The ages and the physical, mental, and emotional conditions of the parties;
  4. The retirement benefits of the parties;
  5. The duration of the marriage;
  6. The extent to which it would be inappropriate for a party, because that party will be custodian of a minor child of the marriage, to seek employment outside the home;
  7. The standard of living of the parties established during the marriage;
  8. The relative extent of education of the parties;
  9. The relative assets and liabilities of the parties, including but not limited to any court-ordered payments by the parties;
  10. The contribution of each party to the education, training, or earning ability of the other party, including, but not limited to, any party’s contribution to the acquisition of a professional degree of the
  11. The time and expense necessary for the spouse who is seeking spousal support to acquire education, training, or job experience so that the spouse will be qualified to obtain appropriate employment, provided the education, training, or job experience, and employment is, in fact, sought;
  12. The tax consequences, for each party, of an award of spousal support;
  13. The lost income production capacity of either party that resulted from that party’s marital
  14. Any other factor that the court expressly finds to be relevant and equitable.