As time passes, one or both parties may need divorce modifications. Changes in your life, your ex-spouse’s life or your children’s lives may trigger the need to revisit the terms of the divorce, custody and/or child support. Sometimes, your attorneys work out the divorce modifications, and they file the agreement with the court for review. When you and your ex-spouse can’t agree, one attorney files a motion, and the court orders a hearing. The right attorney guides you through the options, and keeps your rights and best interests protected at all times.
You can seek an alimony modification if you have a substantial change in your ability to pay alimony or there’s a change in your ex-spouse’s need for assistance. The court requires you to show a substantial and continuing change to your circumstances. The fact that you didn’t like the original divorce terms is not grounds for a modification. Courts don’t typically revisit the division of property or debt, however, courts will consider child support and alimony modifications.
Substantial changes that may warrant modifications include:
At your hearing, your attorney argues for the changes you want and presents evidence of those changes to the court. For example, maybe your employer reduces salaries companywide, thus reducing your ability to pay alimony or child support. Or maybe you suffered an injury and cannot work. Maybe there is a health issue with you or one of the children in your care.
If the judge agrees with your reasons and signs the modification, it becomes a court order and binds both parties.
Remember, your original divorce settlement is not “for life.” At Carl T. Boake, P.A., we are committed to serving your best interests during and after your divorce. For more than three decades, we have counseled thousands of clients in the St. Petersburg area and helped them get the results they needed. Call Carl today to schedule a consultation.
The Pinellas County Courts typically require mediation before resorting to the court for decision-making in divorce cases. Mediation is non-confrontational and can be the most efficient way to resolve disputes.
The traditional court system is available for cases that cannot be resolved through mediation. It is important to get a divorce lawyer who is experienced in courtroom litigation.
The process generally takes up to one year due to the required paperwork, financial discovery, and other administrative tasks. However, the duration can change based on different factors of each case. Some cases can be completed in less than a month where both parties are motivated to work toward a final resolution.
Most cases are resolved through mediation, which is a non-confrontational, confidential process. However, if a result cannot be accomplished through mediation, the courts are always available to deliver a final judgment.
The best way to resolve conflicts is to be honest with your attorney about the facts of your case and the goals you wish to achieve. Get a divorce attorney that you can trust, have a strong rapport with, and follow their advice.