Willamette Law Online

Oregon Court of Appeals


Steele and Steele

Summarized by: 

Date Filed: 12-12-2012
Case #: A143696
Ortega, P.J. for the Court; Brewer, J.; and Hadlock, J.
Full Text Opinion: http://www.publications.ojd.state.or.us/docs/A143696.pdf

Family Law: A court may authorize an award of indefinite compensatory and maintenance spousal support if, based on the facts and circumstances of the case, the award provides to both spouses a standard of living roughly similar to the one during marriage.

Husband appealed a judgment of dissolution and is challenging the trial court's award of indefinite spousal support to Wife. Husband and Wife were married 24 years. Wife worked initially, but both agreed that Wife would stop working once she had children. Additionally, Wife has physical ailments that limit her earning potential. The trial court awarded indefinite unallocated compensatory and maintenance spousal support to Wife in the amount of $4200 per month. On appeal, Husband argued that the maintenance support does not provide him with sufficient funds for his needs while providing more than sufficient funds for Wife. Husband provided no explanation and failed to point to evidence in the record indicating that the award hindered his needs. The Court of Appeals held that in determining maintenance spousal support, the goal is to provide both spouses a standard of living similar to the one enjoyed during the marriage. Given the factors and circumstances indicated in the record, the Court found that the spousal support award was proper. Affirmed.