Richmond Order Law and Legal Definition

Richmond order refers to an order providing the supported spouse with notice that support will terminate on a specified date unless prior to this date the supported spouse shows good cause to extend it.

The name originates from the case In re Marriage of Richmond, 105 Cal. App. 3d 352, 355-356 (Cal. App. 1st Dist. 1980), wherein the standard was set. In Richmond, the trial court ordered husband to pay spousal support to wife in 1978. Said obligation for spousal support shall continue through the month of September 1981, at which time spousal support shall forever terminate and the jurisdiction of this Court over the issue of spousal support shall terminate, unless prior to September 30, 1981, wife makes a showing of good cause to extend spousal support beyond that date.’ The Court of Appeal found no abuse of discretion in setting an advance date for the termination of spousal support and placing the burden on the supported spouse to show good cause why support should be extended. Such an order, the court concluded, encouraged “supportive self-reliance” and discouraged “delay in preparation for or in seeking, or refusal of, available employment.” The appellate court also noted the trial court reasonably could have concluded it was probable wife would be self- sufficient by the designated cut-off date and that she, with the better access to relevant evidence, should bear the burden of making a contrary showing.