Going through a divorce can be incredibly difficult, and there are many aspects of a divorce case that should be handled by an attorney. This includes spousal support, also known as alimony. At the Law Offices of Stephanie L. Mahdavi, we are ready to help ensure you are treated fairly when it comes to receiving or paying alimony. The Westlake village alimony attorneys with our office will get to work on your case immediately.
When a couple of divorces, it is often the case that one spouse involved will be left with fewer means than they had during the marriage. This occurs for various reasons. It may be the case that one spouse decided to forgo their career so the other could succeed, or that one spouse decided to stay home while children were young.
Regardless of why one spouse may have lesser means in the aftermath of a separation, it may be the case spousal support is needed to ensure that the spouse is taken care of post-divorce. Alimony payments are calculated using a variety of factors, including:
Contrary to popular belief, not all alimony is permanent. There are various types of alimony that may be awarded. This could include:
Another misconception regarding alimony is that when a court orders a spouse to pay alimony, barring extraordinary circumstances, said spouse must always abide by the terms of the order.
This is not always the case. There are instances in which alimony may be modified even after a court has ordered it to be paid.
Alimony modifications are typically granted when the financial circumstances of the individual paying alimony change suddenly and significantly. This often involves the loss of a job.
That’s not to say that a request for an alimony modification will be immediately granted simply because a payer is no longer gainfully employed. To demonstrate that an alimony modification is appropriate in these circumstances, the payer must show that due to factors outside of their own control it is unlikely they will be able to secure employment offering an income equal or nearly equal to that of their previous job in the foreseeable future.
Some people also mistakenly believe that they can avoid paying alimony or reduce the amount of alimony they need to pay by quitting their jobs. This is not so. Someone cannot merely leave a well-paying job in an attempt to stop paying alimony to an ex-spouse.
All that said, if someone paying alimony loses their job or otherwise finds themselves in new financial circumstances and genuinely will not be able to recover financially in the near future, they may petition the court for an alimony modification. The court will evaluate the details of the request and potentially modify an alimony order so that a payer can stop paying alimony for a period of time or be required to pay less alimony than they have typically been required to pay.
Are you currently paying alimony and considering asking the court for a modification to your current alimony agreement? Or, have you been receiving alimony payments, and now worry that you will stop receiving them because your ex-spouse has petitioned the court for a modification?
In either case, it is very important to have a legal professional on your side. Remember, to show that an alimony modification is warranted, you must show that you did not willingly alter your own financial circumstances with the goal of avoiding making alimony payments. You must also show that, in spite of your best efforts, your opportunities for returning to your previous state of financial well-being are currently limited and are likely to remain limited for some time. This is easier to do with the help of a qualified Westlake Village alimony modification attorney.
On the other hand, perhaps your ex-spouse has requested that an alimony order be modified. Maybe you have strong reason to believe that their request should not be granted.
Protecting yourself and your rights is vital now. Don’t make the mistake of assuming the court will make the right decision and reject a petition for alimony modification. Hire an attorney who can argue why your ex-spouse’s alimony modification request should not be granted.
If you are going through a divorce, and there is a chance that alimony will be required, speak to a skilled attorney as soon as possible. These cases can become complicated, and alimony is a contentious issue. At the Law Offices of Stephanie L. Mahdavi, we are ready to help, whether you should be receiving alimony payments or will be required to make alimony payments. We are also available to help if any modifications are needed for your alimony payment arrangements.