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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 110577
Experience:  Experienced attorney: Family law, Estate Law, SS Law etc.
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Does CAhave a spousal support law stating support can only

Customer Question

Does CAhave a spousal support law stating support can only be modified by 10% at a time? My attorney threatened tofire me if I didn't sign to have my support lowered from 25,000 to 3100 and now judge states since I agreed to stipulation there isn't recourse. Do I have a reasonable complaint against this attorney to ABA?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 6 years ago.
The CA law has no such provision that states it can only be modified 10% at a time. Spousal support is something that is actually discretionary to the court and is based upon many factors surrounding a significant change in financial circumstances of the paying spouse. The reason the judge would not get involved is because CA family code specifies that an agreement for spousal support may not be modified or revoked by the court to the extent the parties' written agreement (Ca Fam § 3591(c)). Furthermore, whether a spousal support modification is warranted "depends upon the facts and circumstances of each case, and its propriety rests in the sound discretion of the trial court . . ." [Marriage of Olson (1993) 14 Cal.App.4th 1, 7, 17 Cal.Rptr.2d 480, 485; Marriage of Tydlaska, supra, 114 Cal.App.4th at 575, 7 Cal.Rptr.3d at 595-596] So long as the trial court exercised its discretion along legal lines, its decision will not be disturbed on appeal if there is substantial evidence to support it. Reversal by the court of appeals requires a clear showing of abuse of discretion.

If the attorney used his professional judgment and discretion in telling you that the offer you had was the best you could do and can demonstrate you were being unreasonable, then he could withdraw from the case on those grounds. Thus, in any complaint you would make, which would be to the CA bar association office of chief trial counsel (, would have to demonstrate that the attorney's actions were not reasonable in light of the circumstances.

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