If your divorce included an agreement or order to pay spousal maintenance, it is important to know that modifications are possible. The law permits either the paying or receiving party to request the court to change a support order under certain conditions.

When you believe a change to your maintenance agreement is due, a seasoned spousal support modification lawyer in The Colony is here to guide you through this process. Contact our firm today to schedule your confidential consultation with a committed legal advocate.

Substantial Change Could Justify a Maintenance Modification

When a court orders spousal maintenance, the obligation usually terminates after a set period. In most cases, the longer the marriage, the longer the obligation to pay support. If the receiving spouse cares for a disabled child or has a disability that prevents them from working, an obligation to pay spousal maintenance could be indefinite.

A party must demonstrate a substantial change in circumstances to support a petition for modification. Changes that significantly impact a party’s financial position during the term of the maintenance obligation could merit modifying the support order. Some situations that could prompt a party to seek modification include:

  • Involuntary separation from a job
  • Serious accident or illness
  • Catastrophes such as the loss of a home due to fire, flood, or natural disaster
  • Significant increase in income
  • Financial windfall

A receiving party’s failure to become self-supporting also could be grounds for a paying party to seek a modification of their maintenance obligation.

Either the paying party or the receiving party could petition the court to modify the maintenance order. An attorney serving The Colony could represent a party pursuing or defending a spousal support modification.

Grounds to Terminate Spousal Maintenance

If either the paying party or the receiving party dies, the obligation to pay maintenance ends. The remarriage of the receiving party also extinguishes a maintenance order. The paying party does not need a court order to stop paying maintenance in these circumstances.

A paying party can stop providing maintenance if the receiving party begins cohabitating with a new romantic partner. However, the payer must first get a court order terminating their obligation. The court will require proof that the receiving party is cohabitating with a partner before it will terminate the obligation to pay maintenance.

The maintenance obligation is based on the receiving party’s need for support to meet their basic needs. If the receiving party begins earning sufficient income to support themselves or receives an inheritance or windfall, the paying party could seek to terminate maintenance. However, the paying party would need to take the receiving party to court and prove that the recipient no longer requires support. If someone has further questions about modifying or terminating spousal maintenance, they should speak with a knowledgeable attorney serving The Colony.

Negotiating a Maintenance Modification

If a court issued a maintenance order with the divorce decree, a court must approve any change to it. However, it is not always necessary to petition a court for a hearing on the matter.

The parties could agree to modify the maintenance order. They could negotiate directly with each other, through their legal representatives, or go to mediation. If they decide to adjust the payment amount, a spousal support modification attorney in The Colony could formalize their agreement and submit it to the court for approval.

Get Help From a Spousal Support Modification Attorney in The Colony

If your spousal maintenance arrangement is causing hardship or failing to meet your needs, you may be able to ask a court to modify this agreement. Speak with a spousal support modification lawyer in The Colony about your legal options.

You must comply with the existing maintenance order until the court issues a new one. Contact an attorney from our firm today to get the modification process started.

Meet Matt Towson

Our Law Firm’s approach to your case is based on individual circumstances. Whether it is a simple negotiated settlement, or it requires an aggressive approach, we will protect and defend your best interests.

Meet Matt Towson
Meet Matt Towson
Meet Matt Towson