Will You Pay Alimony if Your Spouse Doesn’t Work?
I get asked as a New Jersey Divorce Lawyer, “What if my spouse isn’t working? How am I going to get alimony?” The answer is simple, “You’re not.” I’m not trying to be a wise guy, but you’re not going to be able to force your spouse to give you money he or she doesn’t have. It’s important though, that you identify in an order of the court, when you get your judgment of divorce, it’s important to keep track of the arrears.
If you’re not getting your support paid through the probation department, you have to keep track of the arrears. You must understand what you were supposed to be paid and, whenever you’re not paid, mark the record. Send your spouse an email. Send him or her a letter. Stay on top of them and say, “You’re supposed to pay me X dollars. You haven’t paid it for the last three months. You owe me X dollars right now.” That’s the first thing you can do.
Your second step is to talk with an experienced New Jersey Divorce Lawyer about your enforcement options. Maybe your spouse simply can no longer work in the environment where they were working when they got divorced and truly can’t pay their support anymore. Instead of fighting and spending money on legal fees on something you know will never change – such as a spouse who once had a specialized license, but then lost that license.
It could be anything. Let’s say you’re a teacher and you had an accident. As a result, you can no longer stand or sit, and you’re somewhat disabled. You can’t be in a classroom anymore. You can’t do your job anymore. You have to find another type of job. Find out why your spouse isn’t paying the support he or she is supposed to pay. Then go over your options with an attorney.
You might try to force their hand, and enforce the order by going to the judge and saying, “Listen judge. I’m supposed to be getting this amount of money. I didn’t get this amount of money. Help me get this money from this individual.” Or, you might work with the individual and realize there’s been a change of circumstances which will allow a change in the support order. Just because the spouse doesn’t have a job doesn’t necessarily mean the alimony award goes away right away. Be really careful with it.
Is your spouse refusing to work and you feel that you will end up paying alimony? Contact experienced New Jersey Divorce Lawyer Christopher Leon Garibian for help.
Christopher Leon Garibian, Esq. is a partner in the matrimonial and family law department of Weiner Law Group LLP. He has over 19 years of experience handling a multitude of Divorce and Family Law Matters throughout New Jersey. He is passionate about family law and takes pride in his ability to effectuate real change in the lives of his clients. He is certified by the State Supreme Court of New Jersey as a Matrimonial Attorney. If you are in need of an experienced Divorce Attorney or Family Law Attorney in NJ, contact us today for compassionate, long lasting legal solutions.