If you are currently receiving spousal support, also called alimony, there may come a time when you wish to increase it. There are various reasons for needing more money from your former spouse, and there are a few ways to go about getting it. You should learn the basics of increasing spousal support, and then contact our firm if you have questions or want to pursue legal help getting the money you need.
Common Reasons for Additional Alimony
If your bills have suddenly increased, you should consider asking for more money from your former spouse. After all, the original amount was partly based on your expenses at the time, so you are likely entitled to more money if your bills have increased.
The same is true if your former spouse’s income has increased substantially. The amount he or she has to pay is partly based on his or her income, so it makes sense that the alimony will increase when the paychecks are quite a bit bigger.
Another common reason for increasing alimony is that you suddenly have health problems that keep you from working. If you are not able to continue the lifestyle you have had because you cannot bring in the same income, it is probably time to consider increasing spousal support. You will benefit from the help of a New York divorce lawyer if you want the best results.
How to Get More Money
If you are certain your former spouse will agree to give you more money, you can both put the new agreement in writing. Most judges are happy to quickly sign such orders since they are uncomplicated when both spouses agree. However, few people agree to give their former spouse more money, even when it is fair to do so. That’s why you will more than likely need a lawyer.
Once you determine that your former spouse does not wish to give you the money you deserve, and you hire a lawyer, you need to persuade the judge that you need the increased income. This means you should gather as much proof as possible that supports your position.
A good law firm will help you collect the proof you need. This can include evidence of your former spouse’s higher income or your increased bills. It can also consist of medical records or a doctor’s note that says you cannot work and therefore need more income from your ex. The more proof you have, the better your chances of increasing your alimony.
It is important to know that in New York State, if you have a written agreement that was incorporated into a judgment of divorce and the issue of maintenance was address, it is extremely difficult to get either an increase, or ask the Judge for a decrease. The standard of proof in New York that needs to be overcome if there is a written agreement is extremely high, and a spouse asking for either an increase or decrease must prove either an extreme hardship or an unforeseen and unanticipated change in circumstances. For the most part, all terms of the agreement will control
In some cases, your alimony may be set to increase automatically. This is because some agreements state that alimony will increase the minute the paying spouse’s income increases. Other agreements simply increase the amount due to cost of living going up virtually every year. If you can find such a clause in your agreement, yet your alimony has not increased yet, you should contact Brian D. Perskin & Associates PC to find out what you can do to get the money you are owed.