Court-ordered alimony payments are a significant financial obligation that can carry a couple’s hostility well beyond the date of their divorce. While no one likes paying alimony, it is a court-ordered payment that must be taken seriously. At Viloria, Oliphant, Oster & Aman, L.L.P., we always urge our clients to strictly follow their court orders and to contact us if they cannot for any reason. Failing to follow court orders not only hurts a person’s credibility and ability to seek affirmative relief for themselves, but it can also have grave legal consequences.
The Consequence of Defaulting on Alimony Payments
No one should choose to stop paying court-ordered alimony, as this decision to default on alimony will come back to haunt the responsible spouse. When a spouse fails to pay court-ordered alimony, the receiving spouse has the legal right to enforce the alimony order. This is accomplished by seeking a court order that directs the party in default to pay the arrears, along with the costs and attorney’s fees that the receiving spouse took on to collect the outstanding alimony payments.
This money judgment can be enforced by execution or by any other collection method allowable under the law. This includes seizure of that spouse’s separate property and sale to satisfy the debt. This can include houses, bank accounts, stocks, vehicles, etc.
Seeking a Modification of Alimony
To preemptively avoid the situation of default in alimony payments, you should contact a family law attorney. The law envisions that a person’s employment prospects can change for the worse. A spouse who can no longer afford the alimony payments can seek a modification of their obligation if they can demonstrate that their income has declined by twenty percent or more and can no longer afford to pay the ordered amount. Notably, a modification of alimony does not impact payments that have already accrued—the responsible spouse must fully pay arrearages.
Contact the Family Law Attorneys at Viloria, Oliphant, Oster & Aman L.L.P.
If you need help resolving an issue of alimony, you need an attorney to help. Alimony orders are fraught with peril and an attorney can help you address the situation the right way. Our attorneys are smart, experienced professionals who can help you effectively resolve any family law issue. Let us help you. Call Viloria, Oliphant, Oster & Aman L.L.P. today at (775) 227-2280 to schedule a case consultation or contact our office through our website.