As an attorney understands, having to shell out money to your ex during or after divorce is likely the very last thing you want to do. Some former spouses may have to pay alimony to their ex, if the court believes that they are in need of financial assistance due to monetary hardships after the separation. Unfortunately, it isn’t uncommon for ex spouses to take advantage of the system when they really don’t need the financial help after all.
If you are worried about becoming the paying spouse in an unfair alimony situation, then we urge you to make an appointment with our law firm before the process continues. Here are ways that you can try to avoid paying alimony after divorce:
Review Your Prenuptial Agreement
Since you cannot go back in time and change your prenuptial agreement, now is the time to have your attorney review the document to see if there are any protections that impact you regarding alimony. One spouse may ask for a prenuptial agreement before marriage if they make or have drastically more money than the other spouse, and doesn’t want to pay alimony in the event of divorce down the line.
Bringing Forward Evidence of Infidelity
Depending on the laws for the state you reside, adultery may be a factor in alimony. However, you will have to prove infidelity occurred to the court to their level of satisfaction. Your attorney can suggest ways to prove cheating happened in your marriage, such as uncovering photographs, letters, emails, video recordings, witness statements, hiring a private investigator, and more.
File For Divorce Without Delay
When the court is deciding whether alimony is awarded and for how much, one important variable is how long the spouses were married. If you know you are in an unhappy marriage and separate but don’t file for divorce for many years, you may end up having to pay more in alimony than if you got the process going sooner. Shorter-term marriages may not even result in an alimony arrangement. So, if you know the marriage is not going to work out, then take action towards an official divorce sooner rather than later.
Offer a Large Lump Sum
In some instances, paying alimony cannot be avoided. So, your attorney may suggest giving your ex spouse his or her alimony in one large lump sum, versus smaller payments over a long period of time. If the idea of having to send a check to your ex on a monthly or other scheduled basis makes you cringe with resentment, then getting it over with in one large chunk may be preferred. Your lawyer can talk with you more about whether the lump sum option is in your best interest.
Spouses who are concerned about getting taken advantage of in regards to alimony, can meet with a family law lawyer in Gig Harbor, WA, like from Robinson & Hadeed, at their earliest convenience for more information.