Do You Need To Change Your Alimony?
I am David R. Hartwig, Esq., an attorney based in Salt Lake City ready to help you with changing alimony in Utah. Modifying alimony, also referred to as spousal support, can be a difficult process, requiring the expertise of a lawyer who regularly deals with post-divorce issues, and I have been doing these types of cases, both working to reduce an alimony obligation or increase an alimony award, for over 30 years.
When Can Alimony Be Changed?
The first thing you need to do is have a “material and substantial changes in circumstances” that justify a change in your alimony. I can assist you to see if your change (a loss of employment, disability or retirement) will be a sufficient change. If so, you need to file your petition quickly, so that you can preserve a retroactive date in changing alimony.
In determining whether to change alimony after a divorce, a court will consider at least the following factors:
- The change in circumstances, and the effect of that change on the following factors
- The financial condition and needs of the recipient spouse
- The recipient’s earning capacity or ability to produce income
- The ability of the paying spouse to provide support
- The length of the marriage
- Whether the recipient spouse has custody of minor children requiring support
- Whether the recipient spouse worked in a business owned or operated by the paying spouse
- Whether the recipient spouse directly contributed to any increase in the paying spouse’s skill by funding the paying spouse’s education or by allowing the paying spouse to attend school during the marriage
When weighing all of these factors, a court will generally base alimony on the current standard of living in light of the change in circumstances. The court may then review the old alimony obligation and may modify that alimony obligation to fit in with life after that change.
Amending An Alimony Order Post-Divorce
If parties’ conditions change post-divorce decree, alimony may be reviewed and modified. As an experienced Utah spousal support modification lawyer, I understand how to assess a client’s income and ability to pay spousal support in relation to the factors looked at by courts when making alimony awards.
I have helped many clients obtain modifications when an initial order does not accurately reflect the parties’ circumstances. For example, I have assisted clients in reducing support obligations when a former spouse is cohabiting with another person, but has not remarried. These cases are often difficult to prove because simply showing that a former spouse is living with someone else is not enough to establish cohabitation. I know how to handle these cases, and ultimately obtain a favorable result for my client. In addition to assisting clients in spousal support reduction, I also handle support enforcement, and am one of the few attorneys in Utah who is certified as a Special Master for high-conflict divorce cases. This means that courts often call on me to de-escalate particularly difficult situations, for which I have special training.
I Can Help You Make The Changes You Need
If you are either paying, or receiving, alimony and your life has undergone a big change, I can provide the advice and counsel of an experienced divorce modification attorney. Please contact me, David R. Hartwig, Esq., and schedule a consultation. I have helped many clients successfully amend spousal support orders after a divorce has been finalized, creating a more workable arrangement based on income and ability to pay, and I may be able to help you.