Florida judges do not hastily make any decisions to modify alimony payments after a divorce. There must be a well-established and objective set of circumstances in place before such would even be considered. The state has created a formula by which Judges must abide. Alimony is almost never modified immediately following a divorce. There needs to be a time period by which new claims can be proven.
The first, and foremost point that must be proven is that there has been a substantial change in circumstance. The keyword being “substantial.” A substantial change is one in which there has been an unplanned, involuntary, and permanent change that will affect the financial status of one involved party. Consider things such as major health issues, sudden loss of employment, retirement, death, criminal charges, or winning the lottery are all examples of such a change. In other words, any significant event by which a person’s income would either increase or decrease substantially.
If any party who receives alimony gets remarried, or it can be proven that person is garnering some kind of financial support from another relationship, then alimony can be terminated.
There are a few common hurdles that will likely need to be addressed in a request for modification. These are the main reasons that a Judge will deny such a request. First, if alimony was never awarded to begin with, then modification is not an option. Second, if a change in circumstance is not considered substantial. Such a change must be unplanned. It cannot be intentionally caused by either party. If so, the request will be denied. Consult with an experienced divorce attorney if you would like to determine whether or not your circumstance would constitute a modification of alimony. He or she can give you an educated opinion as to whether or not a Florida judge would grant or deny your request.