Getting divorced is one of the most stressful life events you can experience. It impacts pretty much every aspect of your life going forward. During the divorce process, spousal support is one of several issues that may be at the forefront of the divorce.
The primary goal of spousal support payments is to ensure that the party with fewer resources or less earning capacity receives the financial support they need to maintain a decent living standard after the divorce. Depending on the circumstances, spousal support can be short-term or long-term. However, it is important to understand that the spousal support amount is not cast in stone. There are times when either party may petition the court to modify or terminate these payments. Here are three such instances.
Remarriage of the receiving spouse
Legally, spousal support obligations end when the dependent spouse remarries. As a matter of fact, the dependent spouse can be compelled to pay back any funds received after their marriage. While petitioning for spousal support termination, the court will require a copy of the marriage certificate.
The cohabitation of the receiving spouse
A dependent spouse who gets into a romantic relationship with another partner may also lose their right to spousal support payment. Of course, cohabitation can be quite ambiguous and, thus, difficult to prove. Some of the evidence the court will need to prove cohabitation includes receipts or contracts of shared obligations like rent and utility payments.
Termination by agreement
If the spousal support was designed to meet a specific goal, like getting the education or skills necessary to find work, and that goal has been realized, then both parties may agree to end the payments.
Spousal support is an important component of the divorce process. Find out how you can safeguard your rights and interests while litigating spousal support.