Going through a divorce can be tough for everyone involved. Sometimes, after the divorce process ends, circumstances change, and adjustments become necessary. One such adjustment can be modifying a spousal support order.
Those preparing for divorce should understand what spousal support is. Those who pay or receive alimony should review when and why modification could become necessary, and how to go about making those changes.
Understanding spousal support
Spousal support, also known as alimony, is a legal arrangement where one spouse provides financial assistance to the other spouse after a divorce. It is often put in place to ensure that both parties can maintain a similar standard of living they had during the marriage. However, life is unpredictable, and situations can change, making the original spousal support order unfair or impractical.
There are several reasons why a spousal support order may need modification. For example, if the paying spouse loses their job or faces a significant reduction in income, they may struggle to meet the original support obligations. On the other hand, if the receiving spouse experiences an increase in income or remarries, they may no longer require the same level of financial assistance. Additionally, changes in health, retirement or other unforeseen circumstances can also warrant a modification. The Texas Statutes states that modification only applies to alimony payments after the filing of a motion, and modification cannot extend alimony beyond the original order.
Modifying a spousal support order
Those who want to modify an alimony order should start by collecting all the necessary documents, such as proof of income changes or medical reports, to support their request for modification. Before going to court, they should consider discussing the proposed changes with their ex-spouse. If both parties agree on the modifications, it can simplify the process and save time and money. The court will consider all factors and make a decision accordingly.
Modifying a spousal support order is a complex process, but it is possible if there are valid reasons for change. By understanding the reasons for modification and following the necessary steps, people can seek fair adjustments that reflect their current circumstances and promote a better future for both parties involved.