Will a domestic violence conviction affect spousal support?

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The trial court has discretion to order spousal support to be paid as the court considers just and reasonable, after considering the ability of either party to pay and the character and situation of the parties, and all the other circumstances of the case. The parties’ conduct during the marriage is one of several factors the court must consider when determining whether alimony should be awarded in a divorce proceeding.

If the defendant is convicted of domestic violence, the “fault factor” starts to weigh in favor of the victim. But it can be offset or mitigated by other surrounding facts, such as: the victim’s contribution to the breakdown of the marriage; the degree of severity of the domestic violence in the home; any prior instances of domestic violence between the parties and their child(ren); the age and incomes of the parties; and the physical health of the parties.

Much like the analysis for property division, there’s multiple factors for the court to consider. The fact that one factor weighs in favor of the victim does not mean that the court will provide an inequitable result. We have dealt with these types of cases on multiple occations. Give us a call to see if we can help you.*

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