After a marriage ends in divorce or separation, the husband and wife may be on very different financial footing. To remedy this, states have implemented alimony or spousal support, in which one spouse makes payments to the other either during the separation or even after the divorce is finalized. The amount of the alimony or spousal support payments in California usually depend on the income and ability of the paying spouse to contribute, and the needs of the payee spouse. It may be altered or modified when circumstances change significantly. Laws vary widely in different jurisdictions, so a local divorce or family law attorney focused on alimony or spousal support cases in California can give you legal advice based on your particular circumstances.