Can You Stop Paying Alimony If Your Ex-Spouse Moves In With A New Partner?
Divorce does not mean that your ex-spouse can no longer affect your life, financially or otherwise, especially if you have children together. It does, however, mean that you are free to date someone new or even remarry. The default option is for the family court not to interfere in divorced parents’ relationships with new partners or new spouses. Every family is different, though, and new partners may be a factor in parenting plans in a variety of ways. On the one hand, your parenting plan might specify that the children’s stepfather or his parents bear some responsibility for picking up the children from school on certain days. On the other hand, the parenting plan might indicate that one parent’s new partner cannot be present during that parent’s parenting time; courts will only include this provision if you have evidence that it is not safe for your ex’s partner to be around the children, such as if the partner has used drugs or behaved violently around children in the past. When a divorced person receives alimony, however, a new relationship can affect the alimony award. To find out more about how your ex’s new relationship affects your alimony obligations, contact a Boca Raton alimony lawyer.
But She Says He’s Just a Roommate
Alimony obligations automatically terminate when the recipient spouse remarries. They do not automatically terminate when the recipient spouse enters a romantic relationship. You can make a case for terminating your alimony obligations if your ex is in a financially supportive relationship with her new partner. In most cases, this means that your ex and the new partner live together, but they may still have merged their finances even if they have two households, and the simple act of living under the same roof does not constitute a financially supportive relationship. In at least one case, a former wife was entitled to continue receiving alimony from her ex-husband when she proved that the man with whom she rented a house was just a housemate. The ex-wife and the housemate had separate bedrooms and did not socialize together, even though both names were on the lease, and they shared responsibility for the household bills.
When Your Ex-Spouse’s Living Arrangements Do Not Affect Court-Ordered Support Obligations
Unless your ex moves in with a new partner, her living situation does not change your alimony obligations. Specifically, if your ex moves in with her parents, a sibling, or another family member, this is not a financially supportive relationship; this is just your ex living within her means in preparation for the fact that the alimony obligations will eventually end, pursuant to the court order. As always, if you think that your children are unsafe when they are with your ex’s relatives, you have the right to petition the court to limit the contact between your children and those relatives.
Contact Schwartz | White About Not Letting Your Ex-Spouse Live Large at Your Expense
A South Florida family law attorney can help you avoid paying more alimony than your ex-spouse truly needs. Contact Schwartz | White in Boca Raton, Florida about your case.