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Cairns Law Clearwater Divorce Lawyer
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Modifying Alimony Based On A Change In Income

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A person’s financial situation can change a lot in the years following a divorce. Things like remarriage, the birth of a child, or unemployment, for instance, can significantly change someone’s outlook financially. Experiencing one or more of these changes when already required to pay alimony to a former spouse can be difficult, if not impossible, for the paying party. Fortunately, people who experience a major change, like a reduction or loss of income, can ask the court to modify their original alimony award, so if you recently lost your job and are no longer able to make your alimony payments, you should consider reaching out to an experienced Largo alimony lawyer, who can help you seek a modification of your alimony order.

Modifying Alimony

In Florida, a person can modify an alimony award by proving to a court that he or she has experienced a substantial, material, and unexpected change in circumstances since the issuing of the initial order. This modification can take the form of an increase, decrease, or even the termination of the award altogether. Whether or not a judge approves a request for modification, however, will depend on the petitioner’s ability to prove not only that a change in circumstances has occurred, but that it was unexpected and significant enough to warrant an official change. While many life changes could satisfy this burden, a change in income is one of the most common reasons to request a change in alimony obligation.

Changing Income

Technically, alimony can be modified for a number of reasons, including because one of the party’s remarried, was diagnosed with a serious medical condition, or because the recipient’s financial situation has changed. Perhaps the most common reason to request an alimony modification, however, is an involuntary loss of income, often due to job loss. To succeed when requesting a modification of alimony for this reason, the petitioner will need to demonstrate that the job loss wasn’t voluntary (i.e. he or she didn’t quit). It will also help increase the odds of success if the petitioner can prove that he or she has attempted to obtain new employment, but hasn’t been successful. Courts will also assess the parties’ financial circumstances at the time of the order, versus their circumstances at the time of the petition when determining whether a modification is justified. The approval of a request for modification will generally be more likely if the recipient spouse’s financial situation has improved since the divorce.

Experienced Largo Alimony Lawyers

Modifying an alimony award often requires more than just proving that the petitioner lost his or her job. Instead, that person may also be required to establish that the loss wasn’t voluntary and that attempts at reemployment have been made, but were unsuccessful. To learn more about what is required to meet this burden, please call the dedicated Largo alimony lawyers at Cairns Law today. You can reach us by phone at 727-683-1472 or via online message. We are also available for evening and weekend appointments.

Resource:

leg.state.fl.us/Statutes/index.cfm?App_mode=Display_Statute&Search_String=&URL=0000-0099/0061/Sections/0061.14.html

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