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What you can do if your spouse stops paying spousal support

On Behalf of | Apr 10, 2023 | Spousal Support

Spousal support is one of the vital parts of a divorce. If the court ordered your ex-spouse to pay alimony, they should observe the order. However, down the line, they may stop doing so. If this happens to you, you should take calculated steps.

Here is what you can do. 

Contact them

Before going to court or taking any other measure, you should contact your ex-spouse to determine why they have stopped paying or if they are going through something that has caused the delay. For instance, they may have lost their job, declared bankruptcy or have new responsibilities in their life, such as a new child.

However, your ex-spouse may give an honest response or a false promise. Thus, it can be hard to conclude from the first conversation. But after a couple of discussions or when they ignore your efforts to contact them, you can infer they don’t want to pay. Accordingly, you should consider other options.

Go to court

If your ex-spouse does not want to comply with the current order, you can return to court. A judge will calculate how much they owe you (arrearages) and state how they should pay in addition to their monthly payments. For instance, you can ask the judge to order your ex-spouse to pay a certain amount of the unpaid payment monthly for a particular period.

Reach a new agreement

If your ex-spouse is willing to pay spousal support, but can’t afford the existing order, perhaps they lost their job, they may request a modification. With this option, you will reach a new agreement, which a judge will make official.

A spouse may willingly or unwillingly miss spousal support payments. It will be best to get more information about your case to make the right moves.