Loss of Employment and Alimony Modification

In any Passaic County divorce, one of the most important issues that will need to be decided before the divorce can be finalized is that of alimony (spousal support). While not every divorce will include an alimony component, alimony is awarded in many different circumstances, typically when one spouse is at least partially financially dependent on the other.

Whatever alimony settlement is ultimate reached in your case, that alimony agreement will be based upon several important factors at the time of your divorce, including the income of both parties. However, many times those same factors can change after the initial alimony settlement is reached, and often may call for a modification to the existing alimony agreement.

One of the most common scenarios which may warrant an alimony is the loss of a job by either party, and taking into consideration today’s uncertain job market, it is important to understand how and when a loss of employment can result in an alimony modification.

When a Loss of Job can Result in an Alimony Modification, Clifton Spousal Support Lawyers

As a general rule of thumb, any time a loss of employment was involuntary, that is to say the person didn’t willfully choose to leave their job, than that circumstance will most likely allow for the unemployed party to seek an alimony modification.

This is especially true in the case of the party who is currently making the alimony payments. Part of what is considered when awarding alimony is the ability for both parties to maintain a lifestyle similar to what they enjoyed during their marriage, so if one party can no longer support themselves financially, how can they be expected to support another person? Additionally, it is also possible for the supported party to seek an increase to the alimony payments if and when they lose their job.

Alimony modifications can either be temporary or permanent, depending upon the circumstances and how the judge ultimately rules on the matter. However, this most important part of any alimony modification is the counsel an experienced Clifton spousal support lawyer can provide to you. By working with our alimony attorneys, you can gain a much better understanding of your various options, how to best proceed with the alimony modification process, and ultimately have your best interests and legal rights represented in a court of law.

When a Loss of Employment will Not Result in an Alimony Modification, Wayne Alimony Lawyers

As previously noted, if the loss of employment is considered involuntary, chances are some kind of alimony modification will be possible. On the other hand, if that same loss of employment was voluntary, than it almost certainly will not.

One great example of this is when a person leaves their job in order to attain further education. There is very well-established case law regarding just such a situation, and this case law says that alimony should not be decreased (or increased) in the case than an individual purposely leaves their job to attend school full-time.

Another common example of when a loss of employment will usually not result in an alimony modification include when a person leaves a high-paying job in order to pursue a more long-term, but lower paying, career opportunity.

However, there is one exception to this general rule, and that is in the case of the retirement of the spouse who is currently making the alimony payments. There is a special clause in New Jersey alimony law which allows for an alimony modification to be sought even before a person actually retires. To learn more about how retirement alimony modifications work, please view our article on this topic here.

Contact Our Passaic County Alimony Modification Attorneys Today

At The Law Office of The Montanari Law Group, our attorneys have extensive experience negotiating, drafting, and modifying alimony and spousal support agreements of all kinds for clients in towns across Passaic County, including Clifton, Wayne, Woodland Park, and West Milford.

Our firm believes that by listening closely to each of our client’s needs and concerns, and keeping them highly informed and involved, we can better work to achieve the final resolution which best meets those needs and concerns in any legal matter.

To speak with our family law team today in a free and confidential consultation regarding your divorce, your alimony agreement, or any potential alimony modification issue you may have, please contact us online, or through our Little Falls, NJ office at (973) 233-4396.


To speak with one of our highly knowledgeable attorneys, contact us today at (973)-233-4396 or toll-free at (888)-877-7985. You can also complete the form below to begin your conversation. We are a personalized, boutique-style law firm that offers free initial consultations and flexible appointment options.