Can You Stop Paying Permanent Alimony If Your Former Spouse Moves In With A New Partner?
Some spouses are ordered to pay permanent alimony, after their marriage ends. But, if certain conditions are met, this permanent alimony order can end, even if the new spouse does not remarry.
What Is Alimony?
The definition of “alimony” is as follows: financial assistance/monetary support that is paid to one spouse after a marriage ends in divorce.
To ensure that a now-divorced spouse can continue to support themselves, without the need for financial assistance from the state, alimony may be awarded.
By awarding alimony, a spouse can accomplish the following:
- Maintain their current standard-of-living.
- Support themselves while looking for work.
- Support themselves while improving their skills.
- Live in the same way that they lived while married.
Many of the marriages that end with an alimony order involve one spouse paying another spouse alimony for a fixed period of time.
Even though this is the case, some marriages end with one spouse paying the other spouse alimony for an indefinite period of time, until one of the following conditions is met:
- The receiving spouse passes away.
- The receiving spouse remarries.
But, if the receiving spouse moves in with a new partner who earns just as much as the paying spouse does, will that spouse still need to pay alimony?
What Is Cohabitation?
The definition of “cohabitation” is as follows: an arrangement between two individuals who live together, either as spouses or as unmarried partners.
On its own, this is nothing special. But, within the context of Florida law and, in turn, its relationship to the termination of alimony, cohabitation is very significant.
A former spouse who is in a “supportive relationship” – a phrase that denotes cohabitation – with another individual may forfeit their alimony if certain conditions are met.
The most notable conditions that define a supportive relationship are as follows:
- The former spouse is living with someone whom they are directly related to.
- The former spouse is being financially supported by the individual they are living with.
- The former spouse shares expenses with the individual they are living with.
- The former spouse shares assets with the individual they are living with.
Each one of these conditions, if met, means that a former spouse is in a cohabitation and, in turn, a supportive relationship with another person. By being in this relationship, they may forfeit their alimony.
How Does Cohabitation Affect Permanent Alimony?
The act of cohabitation can lead to the receiving spouse no longer receiving alimony from the paying spouse. But, in order for this to happen, the paying spouse must prove that this is the case.
To prove that a receiving spouse is in a supportive relationship, they must present evidence to the court. Some of the evidence that they can present is as follows:
- The receiving spouse and their partner share a mailing address, refer to each other as “husband” and “wife,” or even using the last name.
- The receiving spouse and their partner have lived together for an extended period of time.
- The receiving spouse and their partner have pooled their assets together and, in turn, they support one another financially.
Each one of these conditions, if proven, can lead to the paying spouse no longer needing to pay alimony to that spouse. But, if these conditions are not proven, then it’s likely that the permanent alimony order will remain.
Speak With A Tampa Alimony Lawyer
Permanent alimony can be difficult. But, if you suspect that the receiving spouse is in a supportive relationship with another individual, you should speak with a Tampa alimony lawyer today and we will assist you in obtaining the best possible legal outcome.