Modifying an Order for Spousal Maintenance

Spousal Maintenance, much like child support, is based off of the income of the party paying for it, but it is also based in large part on the financial needs of the party receiving the same. As we move through life, our income and respective financial circumstances can (fortunately or unfortunately) change. When that happens, it is common for people to want to modify their spousal maintenance orders to better reflect their current financial needs and circumstances. Unlike in modification actions for child custody and child support orders, orders for spousal maintenance may have provisions to make those order non-modifiable in both amount and duration – if so, those provisions will be upheld and the order will continue as is unless and until it is terminated, either by the completion of the payments during the terms set forth in the order, death of the paying party, or the remarriage or death of the receiving party, whichever occurs first.

If your spousal maintenance order is modifiable, however, you will still need to prove a “substantial and continuing” change in circumstance in order to modify it. The Court will take into account the circumstances causing the need to modify and the needs of the individual receiving the support to determine what modification remedy best fits your circumstances.Having an experienced family law attorney with you can help determine whether a modification of spousal maintenance is even possible and to help highlight the factors the Court should consider in formulating such a modification and determining new terms for amount and duration of these support payments. If you find yourself or a loved one are in need of modifying or enforcing a current spousal maintenance order, and need the advice and counsel of an experienced attorney, please call OWENS & PERKINS at 480.994.8824 to schedule your free  30 minute consultation.