I’m Ready to Retire – Can I Stop Paying Maintenance?
You have worked hard for decades at your job or career. You are finally ready to retire. But you have a maintenance (also known as alimony) obligation. How do you get that to stop? CAN you get that to stop?
Maintenance does not automatically stop or terminate upon your retirement. To stop or terminate your maintenance payments, you must obtain a court order either by agreement of the parties or by a Judge’s decision. Your income and expenses and your assets and debts will be evaluated and compared to those of your ex-spouse. Other factors such as earning capacity, age, and health will also be considered.
To start the maintenance termination process, you must file a petition. This is a request for modification of the Divorce Judgment related to maintenance. You will have to prove that retirement is a substantial change in circumstances and that you are no longer able to pay maintenance. Whether a substantial change has occurred is based on the facts and circumstances of your financial position after you retire.
If you request that your maintenance obligation be terminated or reduced because of your retirement, it is possible for the Judge to (1) terminate maintenance (2) reduce maintenance (3) keep maintenance the same. These possibilities can have a huge impact on your financial future if you have already retired and are now on a fixed income. The divorce and family lawyers at Bruning & Associates are able to help you evaluate your chance at terminating or reducing maintenance after retirement.
Call Bruning & Associates to schedule a free consultation if you are nearing retirement and have a current maintenance obligation.