Modifying Alimony in Massachusetts

In a divorce, a spouse may be required to pay their former spouse alimony. Alimony is a monetary obligation awarded to a spouse in a relationship to help support them before and/or after the divorce. This spousal support can be permanent or temporary and, under certain circumstances, may be modified.

What are some reasons to seek a modification of alimony?

There are a number of reasons why a spouse may seek a change in modification. However, whatever the reason, the spouse has the burden to prove that the change is warranted. In Massachusetts, there are two main reasons a spouse may ask for a change in alimony:

  1. There is a material change in financial circumstances. The change can be related to either the paying spouse or the receiving spouse, the receiving spouse has died, or the receiving spouse is remarried or living with a partner.
  2. The alimony was awarded prior to the change in Massachusetts laws in 2012. If this reason applies to a spouse, he or she may be given a time frame outlining when they can file for a modification, which is based on how long the spouses were married.

Who can request a Modification?

Either a paying or receiving spouse may request a modification of alimony. However, they must have a valid reason to request the change. If a spouse decides to request a modification, they must do so in the county in which the alimony as awarded.

Life changes post-marriage are inevitable. These changes may require you to consider modifying any alimony awarded from a divorce.  If you decide to file a modification, you may want to consult with a divorce attorney who can help guide you through the modification process.

If you are in need of an experienced family law attorney to help you with your matter, contact the Law Offices of Cynthia L. Hanley, P.C. to schedule your consultation.