During my divorce, the economy tanked and my assets in the business were severely diminished even though alimony was based on my income when my business was thriving..
After a few years of unemployment, I finally had to settle for a position that pays half of what I was making. I can no longer pay the original amount of alimony.
Is it possible to get the spousal support reduced or eliminated even if my divorce decree does not indicate what events would trigger an alimony modification?
I am unable to give you legal advice on divorce. I can give general divorce help for men, though, my knowledge is based on Nebraska and Iowa divorce laws where I am licensed to practice.
Many states have alimony laws that govern the termination of alimony payments. Therefore, although a decree may be silent as to how alimony may terminate, the alimony statute should provide for the termination upon certain life events, such as death or remarriage.
Beyond the life events of death or remarriage, where I practice, spousal support can be modified by a material change of circumstance, including financial positions of the parties.
Further, a change in position and inability to earn a living at a previously determined salary is a material change, so long as it is through no fault of the obligor.
Based on the facts you provided, it does not sound as though you committed voluntary wastage, so you may have an action for a modification of the amount of alimony owed.
That being said, it does not mean the state withholding agency or court system will automatically check to see if the party receiving alimony has had a life event that would terminate the support payments.
Therefore, you would still need to file a Motion, Petition, and/or Complaint to stop or modify the spousal support payments.
Remember, I am unable to provide you with anything more than divorce tips for men, so please consult with a divorce lawyer in your jurisdiction.