Alimony is sometimes awarded in a divorce proceeding when one spouse earns significantly more income than the other one. Income may change over time, in which case the person paying alimony may petition for a modification in payments. One common reason for this is retirement. An Ohio court may look at several factors in determining whether to grant a modification.
A court may consider the reasonable expectations of the parties regarding retirement and whether or not the person ordered to pay alimony was planning to retire at a particular age at the time alimony was ordered. A court may also look at a person's reasons for retiring and whether it was mandatory or voluntary. The court may consider whether the retirement occurred earlier than planned at a previous time. Courts will consider the paying party's ability to pay alimony after retirement and whether or not the party receiving alimony has the ability to support themselves if the alimony payments are decreased or terminated.
Retirement is one of the many causes for which a petition for spousal support modification is often filed. Those who wish to modify their alimony payments should file a petition as soon as possible after a changed circumstance occurs.
Alimony at times is awarded for the rest of the recipient's life or until the recipient remarries, but the person ordered to pay it can ask to modify it any time a changed circumstance occurs. Those who are in this situation may wish to obtain the assistance of a family law attorney in preparing and filing the required paperwork.