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Can Spousal Support Be Reduced?

In California, when a couple gets divorced, one spouse may be required to pay spousal support, commonly known as alimony. A court will determine a set amount of time that the spouse will be required to pay alimony depending on the case.

After that time period is up, the spouse will no longer be required to make any additional payments. However, certain situations can allow a spouse to terminate or reduce the time of the spousal support agreement altogether.

When Can Spousal Support be Modified?

When a court orders spousal support, they look at the family's current financial and health situations, and if there are any children involved. Depending on the case, the court may choose not to award any spousal support. However, the court may grant it if the family exhibits any of the following factors:

  • The recipient spouse has a health problem or disability
  • There is a significant difference between the incomes of both parties

  • The divorce will significantly change the recipient parties standard of living that they had been used to during the marriage

  • One spouse did not have opportunities to work because they stayed at home to raise their children

  • One spouse made significant contributions to the other spouse's development, like paying for higher education

If you are paying spousal support, and any of these factors are no longer present, you may be able to reduce or terminate your spousal support agreement. Contacting an experienced spousal support attorney can help you evaluate your situation and determine whether or not you have a case for a spousal support modification.

Additionally, courts may consider the following factors when deciding if spousal support should be modified:

  • The recipient is living with a new partner
  • The recipient party’s income level has recently changed

  • The paying party has experienced severe hardship because of payments

  • Any other factors the court deems relevant

How To Modify Spousal Support

If you think you have a case for a spousal support modification, you will need to present a request to the court. Additionally, you will need to provide evidence that there have been changes in you and your ex-spouse's situation that warrants a modification. Our qualified divorce attorney can provide you with expert legal representation to help you modify your spousal support obligation.

Call the Law Office of Michael R. Young at (909) 315-4588 for representation in your spousal support case or contact us online.