Alimony causes one partner to transfer a certain amount of money to their ex-spouse per month following a divorce. You must keep paying alimony before a judge allows you to quit.


What would happen if you quit paying alimony?


When you avoid making alimony contributions, you may face civil or criminal prosecution for contempt of court. Contempt of court is a breach of a court order.


The aftermath of not making alimony payments varies from place to place.  If found guilty, just a fine is imposed in some places, and in some places, someone could face imprisonment. 


When your ex-spouse wants the court to impose alimony payments on you, they will file a written complaint to the court, and you’ll get notification from the court order to stand for a trial to discuss the issue.


Right at the moment, you ought to spend what you owe. The court might grant you additional time to settle the debt or make a new plan to make payments. The more you live in debt, the higher the punishments will get.


The likely payment plans might incorporate expanding your month to month payment to fulfill the back payments (past installments) or including an additional installment each month. Each court contains various alternatives accessible to it, so it’s difficult to know what you’ll confront until you face a judge.


What happens if you can’t handle the alimony payments?


Employment loss, salary cuts, or other causes of income reduction will significantly impact the capacity to pay alimony. If you fail to pay spousal support, you may ask the judge to adjust (change) the support.  You would need to submit a written appeal in court to alter the alimony payments because you cannot stop paying them in any way. The judge would then thoroughly investigate your case.


Be ready to convince a judge why things have deteriorated so far that you can no longer meet the court’s request. If you have lost your employment, carry your termination letter with you to your hearing.


You should also carry pay stubs, tax records, and bank statements to support your point. The more facts you bring to the judge, the higher your odds for the ruling to go your way.


If you suspect you would miss an alimony payment, notify your former partner as well as the court about it. You may also talk to a lawyer to fix the problem.


When does spousal support end?


When your ex’s financial status changes with time, you can petition the court to terminate alimony. First of all, you must read the court order or alimony arrangement and see if anything about termination is stated. Permanent or long-term alimony is unchangeable. You can also request the court to modify or terminate it if the support agreement is quiet on the subject or if it specifies that alimony is adjustable.


When your ex remarries, benefits for alimony ceases.   When your ex is already getting sufficient money to take care of his/her financial commitments, you may be willing to compromise the alimony fees. Alimony payments may often cease immediately or before a fixed date in the future in some cases. You can stop paying the alimony fee once that time comes. 


How do you alter or end an alimony order?


If you feel that you won’t or can’t afford your alimony payments anymore, or if you wish to lower the cost you provide for the support, you’ll need to hire a lawyer to petition the courts for assistance.


Spousal aid is an essential component of the family court structure. When you and your partner get divorced,  the court tries to maintain the financial benefits equal to both the partners. If you do not uphold your word, the implications would be severe.


If you have any concerns, please talk to a local family law lawyer.