If you were injured at work, you may be unable to earn an income until you receive your workers’ compensation benefits. If you have a workers’ compensation lawyer representing you, they may have recommended that you pursue a third-party lawsuit in order to recover your damages. Though the positive outcome of litigation may include a significant settlement, the amount of time it takes to reach that conclusion could be lengthy. In the meantime, your former spouse may be threatening to take legal action against you for non-payment of alimony. Because an alimony agreement is legally binding, they may have grounds for pursuing a court order against you. In fact, your family law attorney may have already recommended that you secure the legal services of a workers’ compensation lawyer if you have not already done so.
Common Workplace Injuries
Many workplace injuries are minor, such as paper cuts or small bruises. They may be so insignificant that they do not require treatment beyond what is available in the company’s first aid kit. At the extreme side of the scale, the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that in 2017, more than 5,000 people died from workplace injuries. Between the minor accidents and the fatalities are all of the accidents that result in a myriad of injuries that may impact the person’s ability to return to their job in a full-time capacity. Here are some common examples of workplace injuries that may impact a person’s ability to earn income and meet their alimony payment obligations:
- Crushed or severed limb
- Brain injury
- Spine or vertebrae injury
- Severe bruising
- Deep lacerations
- Compound fractures and broken bones
- Eye or ear injury
- Post traumatic stress disorder or other emotional conditions
Requesting an Emergency Modification to an Alimony Agreement
If you were injured in a car accident to the extent that it affects your immediate and possibly long term ability to earn income and make your alimony payments, your attorney can submit a request to the court for an emergency modification. For such a request to be approved, your family law attorney may include documentation from your personal injury lawyer and physician that confirms your medical diagnosis and the impact on your ability to make a living.
An emergency modification to an alimony agreement provides a respite to the payer on a temporary or less common, a permanent basis. The terms of the modification may include the necessity to pay the skipped payments at a later time in addition to the regularly scheduled payments. A lawyer, can provide you with guidance as to what to expect and what the court will consider as a reasonable modification request. If you are able to work with your ex-spouse to come to a mutual agreement in terms of a temporary change, your family law attorney can submit the amendment to the court. This may greatly speed up the process for acceptance by a judge.