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Spousal Support

When a couple divorces or legally separates, the judgment may provide for one spouse or partner to pay the other a specified amount of support money each month. This is called “spousal support.” The money can be paid in installments or all at once. In Oregon, there are three different types of spousal support:

  • transitional
  • compensatory
  • spousal maintenance

More than one type of spousal support can be ordered in a case. Transitional support is for a spouse to get an education or training in order to reenter or advance in the workplace. Compensatory support is ordered in situations where one spouse has made a significant financial or other type of contribution for the other spouse’s education, training, vocational skills, career or earning capacity. Spousal maintenance allows a spouse to maintain a similar standard of living he/she had during the marriage and is generally only ordered in long-term marriages. More information is available on the Oregon State Bar’s website, family law resource page and at If spousal support is a contested issue in your divorce or separation trial, parties must complete and file a Uniform Support Declaration. The form must be served on the other party according to UTCR.

Spousal Support and Taxes

Spousal support payments are taxable to the obligee spouse (the spouse who receives the support) and deductible to the obligor spouse (the spouse who pays the support). More information is available on the IRS website.




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