One of the most common questions I receive concerning Spousal Support and Alimony is whether there can be a modification of an Order due to a reduction in employment.  The answer is simple and one that I learned a decade ago in law school, it depends.   Okay, so maybe that isn’t a simple answer.  For all Spousal Support cases, modification can occur upon the showing of a substantial change in circumstance.  However, the change cannot be voluntary.  For example, you cannot quit your job as a financial planner making six figures a year to become a teacher making substantially less.  Although this would be an admirable move, the Court can set your Spousal Support based upon an earning capacity – here, the six digits you were making as a financial planner.  However, if you were laid off for reasons out of your control and were now collecting unemployment, the Court would recognize your change in circumstance and modify the Order.

In Alimony cases, the right to modify is routinely carved out in a Property Settlement Agreement and/or a Court Ordered distribution.   As such, it is very important to have competent counsel represent you in your divorce matters.  As illustrated by the current recession (For the record, I’m not an economist but my house is under-water), stability and certainty in one’s employment seldom exists these days. Often times, Alimony provisions are non-modifiable.  As I have witnessed first-hand, it is the small things in a Property Settlement Agreement that are often overlooked.

Brandon J. Lauria, Esquire represents clients in their Spousal Support / Alimony proceedings in Philadelphia County, Montgomery County, Delaware County, Bucks County, Chester County and Southern New Jersey.

If you are in need of an experienced, knowledgeable and intelligent protection from abuse lawyer, do not hesitate to contact Brandon J. Lauria. Mr. Lauria understands that family legal issues require a level of compassion and personal attention that goes beyond that expected in other areas of law. Mr. Lauria is prepared to offer you the level of care in your protection from abuse case that you deserve.