March 01, 2013 /24-7PressRelease/
-- Maintenance: payer, recipient spouses can seek modifications
Article provided by Jennifer Anntoinette Rivera & Associates
Visit us at http://www.riverafamilylaw.com
When Colorado couples reach the end of a marriage, there will be many issues to resolve. If one spouse made significantly more money than the other, or if perhaps one spouse gave up a career and income in order to raise the children, the income disparity between former partners may be addressed in the form of spousal support or maintenance -- also known as alimony.
Maintenance may be agreed upon by the couple or it may be ordered by a court. While it may help protect a divorcing spouse from suffering financial hardship or ruin due to the split, alimony payments can become problematic when the payer spouse experiences a change in income or overall financial status.
One needs look no further than the latest headlines for examples of this very scenario, which plays out often among high-profile former couples.
Hollywood couple puts spotlight on alimony disputes
Brendan Fraser starred in the successful "Mummy" films, "George of the Jungle" and many other box office hits. Fraser met his wife Afton Smith at a party in 1993 and the couple went on to have three children together before divorcing in 2009. Their divorce settlement included alimony and child support payments totaling $900,000 annually -- no small sum, but recall that at one time Fraser was worth an estimated $45 million.
Recently, however, Smith told a court that Fraser was actually hiding millions in new film contracts when the divorce was settled; Fraser, in turn, has gone to court asking for a reduction in his payments because his acting work no longer earns him the income it once did. He also claims that medical issues affect his ability to earn money through acting.
This Hollywood couple's dispute is, in fact, no different from what many divorced Colorado couples experience. Sometimes a payer spouse is not able to make the payments once agreed upon; sometimes a recipient spouse finds that the payments are not adequate, or that the information used to determine the amounts was inaccurate.
Modifications and other Maintenance options in Colorado
Fortunately, Colorado provides residents with the ability to request a modification to their payments -- this includes an increase, a reduction or even a termination as long as the parties did not agree to a "non-modification" clause. One seeking a modification must be able to demonstrate that a substantial change in circumstances has occurred and will continue to affect the ability to pay or the need to receive alimony.
Sometimes, divorcing couples may find they prefer the idea of one lump sum alimony payment instead of monthly payments. This can ensure that there are no disputes over payments down the road, no missed payments or issues collecting. The recipient spouse may face tax consequences, however, particularly when receiving a very large sum of money in this way. Lump-sum alimony awards are also generally less than what might otherwise be received through a traditional monthly payment schedule.
Maintenance today is not a simple matter of a husband supporting an ex-wife, nor is a payment schedule set in stone -- although there can be serious legal consequences for non-payment. Either former spouse may make maintenance payments to the other, and when either one's financial circumstances change, it is possible to request a modification from the Colorado court system.
Working with a family law professional can help ensure that payment amounts are appropriate, whether one is paying or receiving alimony. When the amount of alimony payments is no longer appropriate due to a change in circumstances, an attorney can help make the case for a modification.---
Press release service and press release distribution provided by http://www.24-7pressrelease.com
# # #Read more Press Releases from FL Web Advantage: