If you are currently paying child support, you might be wondering if these payments will ever end or if they can be modified. The short answer is, yes, spousal support orders are not set in stone and absolutely can be modified. There are only a handful of specific circumstances under which this is possible, however, so it is crucial to understand when it is possible to make this request.
Below is a list of some scenarios in which it is possible to ask that your spousal support order be modified by the court:
- Remarriage: If you and your spouse enjoyed a nice, long 10-year marriage and, after the divorce, you were ordered to pay spousal support for the next five years, but your spouse ends up remarrying, this could give you a valid defense to contest the continuation of your spousal support payments. Generally, this is a good enough reason to discontinue one’s spousal support payments.
- Retirement: If you or your former spouse reaches the age of social security eligibility or becomes eligible for a severance package, you could also terminate or modify your alimony payments. Additionally, in some spousal support payment plans, it is possible that there was a stipulation that allowed the paying spouse to apply for termination or modification at a certain age.
- Cohabitation: If your former spouse enters into a romantic relationship with a new partner and moves in with them or vice versa, you no longer have to pay spousal support. However, unlike a remarriage, the payments will not simply stop immediately. To have your spousal support payments terminated, you will need to go to court with evidence that proves your former spouse is in a new relationship and apply for an order to terminate your payments. Proving that two people are romantically linked and not simply living together can sometimes be a complicated task, so it is important to have skilled legal assistance on your side.
- Retroactive modification: The courts have the ability to retroactively modify spousal support to a date prior to when the request for modification is filed. Of course, whether they choose to do so is left to the court’s discretion.
If former spouses are able to negotiate and reach an agreement on a reasonable amount of spousal support, they can create their own arrangement and give it to a judge for authorization. No matter how well you and your former spouse might get along, never make the mistake of agreeing to something without a judge’s approval. You could end up owing a lot of money if, later on down the line, your former spouse decides that he or she does not like the deal you informally agreed to. Protect yourself and have the order formally authorized.
In the event that you are able to agree to an appropriate amount, you would have to file a motion with the court to have the order modified or terminated.
Spousal Support Attorneys in Katy, Texas
If you are trying to modify your child support payments, you need to hire a skilled family law attorney who is experienced in handling such matters. At Fischer Law Firm P.C., our Katy spousal support attorneys have the compassion and in-depth knowledge that is necessary to achieve a favorable outcome. If financial circumstances have changed, so should your spousal support payments.
Get started on your case today and contact our law office at (346) 444-1050 to speak with one of our spousal support attorneys today.