Can I change my alimony?

On Behalf of | Jan 29, 2020 | family law order modifications | 0 comments

Money leaves your pocket every month to support your ex-spouse. Recently, you may have gone through a change in your life that makes it challenging to maintain the payments.

The court may or may not allow you to alter your alimony agreement. It will all depend on certain factors. The court may consider the following information to modify your alimony.

  1. The type of alimony

Modification of alimony depends on the type of alimony you have. Tennessee provides four types of alimony:

  • Alimony in Futuro is maintenance paid over a period to a spouse who may not be able to earn the income needed to support his or her current standard of living.
  • Alimony in Solido is long-term support. The spouse can pay the amount all at once or in payments.
  • Rehabilitative alimony may help a spouse who does have the same standard of living as the paying spouse. The money may help the spouse get schooling or training to earn more money.
  • Transitional alimony is support for a specified period. The maintenance is for the spouse to adjust to the new financial situation after the divorce.
  1. Change of circumstances

The court may allow you to modify your alimony by showing a substantial or material change in circumstances that are different from the original agreement. The change must be unforeseeable and unanticipated. And it must affect either the spouse’s ability to pay or the receiving spouse’s need for support.

  1. Amount of alimony modification

If you prove your change of circumstances to the court, it will recalculate the amount you will pay. However, the court may still use the same factors when figuring the amount. These alimony factors may include the standard of living, assets, property division and earning capacity.

Remember, if you fail to pay your spousal maintenance, the court may charge you with contempt of court. Your ex-spouse will have to file a petition showing you did not make the payments.