In a divorce, there are agreements created that indicate how certain matters will be handled after the marriage is over. One of the most common and most complicated components is alimony, especially when the person responsible for paying experiences a job loss.
When the payer loses their job, there are steps that can be taken to reduce or stop the payments until a job is secured again. Before exploring what can be done, an attorney should be consulted to explain how the process works. The Chester alimony lawyers at Edens Law Group are here to explain everything that needs to be done to ensure all of the laws related to this matter are followed.
Alimony and Job Loss
If you have lost your job and are responsible for making alimony payments, it’s important to understand that payments will not automatically stop. To stop or reduce alimony, you will have to make a modification to your court order. To file for a modification, the payor has to wait 90 days after losing their employment or income.
Courts only consider allowing a modification if there is a substantial change in circumstances. In most cases, this includes the loss of a job. However, the court will need proof that this decision was a last resort, and not due to selfish reasons like wanting to get out of payments.
When deciding whether to grant the modification, the court will consider:
Why was income lost or reduced?
What efforts have been made to find new employment?
Has there been a good faith effort to find a new job?
Are you healthy and able to find a steady job?
Has your ex’s financial situation considerably changed since the initial alimony order?
How long will it take to the spouse receiving income to improve their earning capacity to the point where they no longer would need alimony?
Is there any other factor deemed relevant and appropriate that would apply in the case?
If the court agrees to the modification, the court has the right to decide whether they will relieve you of any missed payments.
Seek Skilled Legal Representation
Prior to approaching the court regarding alimony, the best next step is to secure legal representation so that all of your questions can be answered. As the payer, it can be difficult to show that you need a pause on making alimony payments on your own.
If you need to request a modification through the court, contact Edens Law Group. We are well-versed in family law and can help you present your case so that the court understands the need for the modification.
Call us today at (908) 259-6565 to discuss your modification case.