When can you reduce spousal support?

When you got a divorce, you found that you needed to pay spousal support. In a way, you didn't mind, because your spouse had supported you early in the marriage. Now, you'll support her as she gets back into her career.

You were paying as expected last month, but now you think your ex-spouse has had plenty of time to get back into the field. She's living with someone new, too, which you believe may be a sign that you don't need to pay spousal support anymore. What should you do?

If your ex-partner is cohabitating with someone else, this may be enough to show that she should receive less spousal support, if any at all. If she has a job, this could also reduce your liability. Depending on your particular support obligation, you may need to bring up one or both of these factors to have your obligation reduced or stopped altogether.

Keep in mind that if your ex-spouse remarries, you may be able to stop paying spousal support. You still need to file for a change in your obligation with the court, which is something your attorney can help you do.

In your own case, if you find you're unable to work, make less money than you did in the past or have more obligations than in the past, you may also be able to have your liability for spousal support reduced. Spousal support isn't meant to be a punishment, so if you're unable to afford it now, the court may reduce it for you in the future.

Source: FindLaw, "Reasons For Reducing Spousal Support," Le Trinh, accessed Feb. 22, 2018

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