Sometimes called “alimony” or “spousal maintenance,” spousal support is money paid from one spouse to the other during or following divorce. Spousal support is not always awarded, but it can be a crucial financial lifeline for people after divorce, especially homemakers who withdrew from the workforce to raise a family.
Spousal support orders are set for an amount and duration that are appropriate to the circumstances. However, each party’s circumstances can change in a way that warrants modifying support payments. If you are making or receiving spousal maintenance payments, it is useful to know which circumstances require or allow a change in payments.
Substantial Change in Circumstances
A change in spousal support requires a substantial change in circumstances and many different situations can qualify. To begin with, if the party receiving spousal support gets married again, moves in with a new partner, or dies, spousal support payments stop. In fact, an individual who is receiving payments can be faced with legal consequences if they fail to notify the paying party that they are cohabiting with, or married to, a new partner....