03 Mar 3 Things To Consider When Adjusting Spousal Support
When a judge orders alimony in Washington state, the payments typically last around 20–33 percent of the length of the marriage, with a tapered amount as time goes on. However, due to unforeseen circumstances, there may be a time when the ex-spouse responsible for the payments can no longer meet the required amount. If you find yourself in this situation, consider the factors below when adjusting your spousal support to ensure the petition goes smoothly.
Do You Have the Specific Documentation for Adjusting Alimony?
When you petition to lower your spousal support payments in the state of Washington, you must show the court that your financial situation has changed significantly. Financial source documents, among other documents, will be required. Consider working with LaCoste Family Law’s spousal support attorney to ensure you have the proper documentation before proceeding with this case. The attorney will also be able to provide you with insight into any other documentation you may need for the case.
Do You Need Abatement or a Modification?
An abatement to your spousal support means the payments would pause for a certain period of time before continuing at the set amount the courts first ordered. A modification would mean completely adjusting the amount on the payment due to the loss of a job or a disability. Whether you need an abatement or modification is something you should consider when adjusting spousal support because it can help steer you in the right direction when it comes to petitioning for an adjustment.
Can You Continue Paying the Current Amount?
When you request to adjust the alimony your ex-spouse was awarded, your payments do not cease or decrease immediately. You are required to continue paying the current amount of the spousal support maintenance until a judge gives the order to reduce the payment. If you fail to pay the alimony while fighting to lower and adjust it, you may need to attend a hearing and explain your situation or pay for your ex-partner’s court and attorney fees. So, it’s important to show due diligence, and continue paying spousal support to the best of your financial ability throughout the case until the judge makes a ruling.
While adjusting alimony and spousal support payments can be difficult, it is not impossible. If you find that you are in a circumstance that affects your payment amounts, you should consider working with an attorney immediately. Remember that you will need proof through documentation that your financial situation has changed in order to adjust payments. Are you facing this situation? Call our office today; we can help!