How to modify alimony in Stamford Connecticut is a very common issue post-divorce. It is especially important in the Stamford Court where the alimony awards tend to be higher than other divorce courts in Connecticut. Under Connecticut law, either party can file a Motion for Modification unless the divorce decree precludes it. Sometimes the Separation Agreement prohibits modification altogether. Other times changes are allowed but only for the amount of alimony or the duration of it.
Therefore, first review your divorce judgment to determine if there are any restrictions on modifying alimony.
If changing alimony is permitted, then prepare a Motion for Modification, get a court date and serve your spouse.
At your hearing, the judge will analyze it like this:
Step 1. The party requesting modification has to prove a “substantial change in circumstances” since the original support award was entered, or since the last time the order was modified.
This could include either party getting a new job or a raise. Of course, decreases in income or losing a job altogether are usually sufficient grounds.
Other examples are:
- Deteriorating health of either party
- Loss of child support or change in child custody
- Remarriage or cohabitation
Step 2. If step one is met, then the judge considers what the new order should be. Some factors are:
- The length of the marriage
- The cause of the divorce
- The age, health, station, occupation and sources of income of the parties
- The vocational skills and employability of the parties
- The estate and needs of each party
- If one parent has custody of minor children, the desirability of that parent securing employment
Not all modifications of alimony require retaining a lawyer. However, given the significance of changing an order, it makes sense to consult with an attorney about potential outcomes.
I represent clients in Family Court matters throughout Fairfield County including Easton, Fairfield, Monroe, Trumbull, Stratford, Bridgeport, Westport, Weston, New Canaan, Wilton, Norwalk, Darien, Stamford and Greenwich.