When you get a divorce in Minnesota, it may be rather common for the court to order spousal maintenance to be included in the divorce settlement. This is frequently referred to as “alimony.” It requires that the spouse with the larger income make payments to the spouse with the lesser income in order to safeguard the same lifestyle that they enjoyed during the marriage and to also ensure the bills get paid.
Even long after the divorce, circumstances do change and that may mean income has changed or the receiving spouse got remarried. Perhaps you are the payer and you retired, causing you to live on a fixed pension. Whatever the reason, there are times when spousal maintenance needs to be modified. If you need to have spousal maintenance modified, an Anoka divorce attorney can help.
Guidance Through The Modification Process
If you have been divorced in Minnesota and you are having difficulty with your spousal maintenance payments, it is time to request a modification before the impact on your finances becomes very serious. Your attorney will fill out the paperwork for you. Keep in mind that until the paperwork is filed, any payments that are not made will still have to be paid.
So what your attorney will do is advise you of the steps in the modification process so you know what to expect. In many situations, your attorney will take these steps to obtain approval for modification:
- File the spousal maintenance modification papers
- Acquire a court date
- Attend a hearing to determine the necessity of the request
Advocating For Your Well-Being
The Minnesota courts have criteria that they use to determine whether or not spousal support modification is necessary. The criteria include:
- An increase or decrease in financial need
- An increase or decrease in the income of either party
- Unforeseen medical bills on behalf of a child living in either home
- Change in the cost of living
If the courts cannot determine whether spousal maintenance is necessary just based on the factors above, the courts can revert to the standard factors that applied in the original order. Those standards include financial need, ability of one party to pay spousal support, age, assets, and years of the marriage.
Your Anoka divorce attorney will help you if modification is necessary. If spousal maintenance is unpaid at any point and it continues to be, those payments can add up. This is why it is important to have your case filed in an efficient manner. You will also receive the personalized service that you need to resolve your family law matters, whether you are dealing with spousal maintenance, divorce, or another matter.