Modifying Alimony Agreements

If you have been financially dependant on your spouse for the entirety of your marriage, you may be able to obtain alimony payments if you are faced with divorce. A divorce is a trying time, feeling confused and in the dark surrounding your finances can cause added stress to an already difficult and emotional situation. An attorney may be able to help you when it comes to requesting alimony or making modifications down the road should the courts deem it to be an option.

Requesting Alimony

If you are considering asking for alimony, you should speak with your attorney for guidance. You may be eligible if you are unable to maintain the lifestyle or standard of living that you had during your marriage. Your attorney can evaluate your earning potential in comparison to your spouses to determine if you have a case to request alimony. Examples of situations in which you may be eligible to obtain spousal support may include:

  • You are financially dependant on your spouse
  • You require medical care that makes you incapable of supporting yourself
  • You do not have the ability to retain the same earning potential as your spouse due to education or time away from the workforce to care for children
  • You were in a long marriage

Ensuring that you request alimony from the start will save you much headache down the road. Your attorney may be able to help negotiate possible alimony payments in the smoothest way possible during a divorce.

Modifying Alimony

Depending on your situation, you may be able to modify your alimony agreement after your divorce is finalized. You will want to consult with your attorney so that they can help to determine if you have a case to do so. The following are situations that may call for a modification to your alimony:

  • You require an increase to account for cost of living
  • Your spouse is making more money than they were before (There must be something written into the original divorce decree in order to be able to collect upon this benefit.)
  • Any monies or income you bring in has come to a halt due to illness or injury
  • You no longer require as much support as you once did
  • You remarry
  • Your financial situation changes

It’s important to note that each state may have variations to how they manage alimony during a divorce and beyond. A family attorney in your area may be able to help you understand the detailed components to alimony within your specific state in a way that is more specific to your situation.

Requesting Alimony After a Divorce

Sometimes, you may realize after your divorce has been finalized that you were in need of spousal support. Unfortunately in most cases,  once your divorce has been finalized, you cannot request alimony if it did not exist in your divorce decree. In cases where alimony is present in the divorce, you can only make changes to your original agreement if there has been a change that needs to be accounted for. There is much to consider when ending a marriage. Emotions can run high, which may result in you making decisions you may have otherwise thought twice about, this could include your need for spousal support. This is a primary reason to make sure you contact an attorney for their counsel once you have made the decision to part ways. An attorney may be able to identify the need for spousal support when you otherwise may not have.

If you are considering a divorce or in the process of ending your marriage, you may want to speak with an attorney regarding the possibility of alimony. They may be able to assess the financial situation of both you and your partner to help determine if you are eligible for alimony from your soon to be ex.