New Jersey Info
New Jersey Divorce Start Your Divorce Find Professionals New Jersey Articles Divorce Facts Divorce Grounds Residency Divorce Laws Property Division Alimony Child Custody Child Support Divorce Forms Grandparent Rights Forum New Jersey Products Divorce by County
New Jersey Articles
Agreements Attorney Relationship Custody & Visitation Child Support Collaborative Law Counseling Divorce/General Domestic Abuse Domestic Partnership Financial Planning Foreign Divorce Mediation Parenting Property Division Spousal Support
Termination / Modification of Alimony
The Court may revise and alter spousal and child support orders from time to time as circumstances require. Before a court will modify a support amount it must be established that changed circumstances exist. In determining whether or not changed circumstances exist, the Court generally looks at:
It is important to note that any change in circumstance relied upon by a party seeking modification of a support order must be involuntary.
In making an application to modify a support obligation, the party seeking modification bears the burden of showing the existence of changed circumstances. The party seeking modification must make full disclosure of their financial status, including tax returns, before the other spouse's financial status becomes an issue. Once the moving party has made a prima-facie showing of changed circumstances, the respondent's ability to pay becomes a factor for the court to consider.
The following are examples of events that can constitute changed circumstances:
In a divorce agreement, the parties can make specific provisions regarding modification. They can specifically agree that at some point, modification will be necessary. The parties may also agree under what circumstances modification will occur. Conversely, the parties may agree that modification will not be permitted.
When a Property Settlement Agreement specifically provides that alimony will be reviewed upon retirement, a future date, or upon some other triggering event, the standard of review may become an issue. The court may look to whether changed circumstances exist or may choose to consider the statutory alimony factors the legislature has said the court must consider in making an initial award of alimony. These factors are:
This author believes consideration of the statutory factors is the more appropriate standard of review, absent a specific agreement. The changed circumstances approach presupposes that alimony should continue, unless a prima facie change of circumstance is proven. The goal is to maintain the marital lifestyle if possible. However, an agreement to review alimony requires scrutiny of all statutory factors, as they relate to the post-judgment financial environment. It is therefore appropriate that agreements provide what the standard for review will be.
If the divorce is being filed under one of the seven fault grounds (including extreme cruelty, adultery, abandonment, substance or alcohol addiction, institutionalization, deviant sexual conduct and incarceration), the 18 month separation period, required for a no-fault divorce, is waived. However, each ground for divorce has its own stipulations.
Easily Connect With a Lawyer or Mediator
Have Divorce Professionals from Your Area Contact You!
|Your Right to Child Custody, Visitation & Support
Cover Price: $
Your Price: $17.95
You Save: $7.00
"A Plain English Guide to Protecting Your Children"
Author: Mary L. Boland, Attorney at Law
|The information contained on this page is not to be considered legal advice. This website is not a substitute for a lawyer and a lawyer should always be consulted in regards to any legal matters. Divorce Source, Inc. is also not a referral service and does not endorse or recommend any third party individuals, companies, and/or services. Divorce Source, Inc. has made no judgment as to the qualifications, expertise or credentials of any participating professionals. Read our Terms & Conditions.|