If you are currently paying alimony, and thinking about retiring, you probably understand the difficult position you are in. Your alimony payments are at least partially based on your current income, and if you retire and that income changes, making your regular alimony payments may become difficult.
Many people make the mistake of assuming that they can just modify their alimony payments once they have retired. The problem with this line of thinking is that you will be expected to pay your current alimony payments throughout the course of the modification process, and it is always possible that in the end, the judge denies your request for modification.
Fortunately, you do have an alternative option.
Filing for Modification of Alimony Before you Retire
New Jersey’s alimony statute allows for alimony payors to file for modification of their alimony agreement before going through with their retirement plan. Along with your Toms River alimony attorney, you can petition the courts for a modification of your alimony agreement under the prospective retirement provision of New Jersey alimony law.
When you and your Spring Lake alimony attorney file for modification, you can include a comprehensive financial plan for your retirement. This will allows the judge to make a more informed decision regarding your current and future financial situation. This way, you can know ahead of time what your alimony obligations will be after your retirement, and can plan accordingly.
New Jersey Judge Discusses Modification of Alimony Pending Retirement
In the recent case of Mueller v. Mueller, the Honorable L.R. Jones provided the following statements regarding the early modification of alimony based on a pending decision to retire.
“The amendment permitting a court to presently consider an obligor’s prospective retirement, as opposed to an actual retirement, is logically designed to avoid placing an obligor in a “Catch 22” financial situation. Specifically, if an obligor is considering the possibility of retirement in the near future, he or she logically benefits from knowing in advance, before making the decision to actually leave the workforce, whether the existing alimony obligation will or will not change following retirement. Otherwise, if the obligor first retires and unilaterally terminates his or her primary significant stream of income before knowing whether the alimony obligation will end or change (and if so to what degree, i.e., termination vs. modification), then the obligor may find him/herself in a precarious financial position following upon such voluntary departure from employment if the court, for whatever specific reason, does not terminate or significantly reduce the existing alimony obligation.”
Planning Your Retirement based on your Ocean County Alimony Settlement
As you can see, if you are thinking about retiring but are worried about your alimony payments, New Jersey alimony laws allow you to make your alimony modification petition before making the ultimate decision about your retirement.
As with any alimony modification, if you wish to pursue an alimony modification based on your retirement, it is important that you retain experienced Ocean County alimony modification counsel. Your Jackson alimony attorney can help you to prepare all of the necessary documents, present your arguments to the judge in a concise and informed manner, and ensure that the judge gives your case the attention it deserves.
Contact a Brick, NJ Alimony Attorney Today
At Bronzino Law Firm, we have extensive experience helping clients across Spring Lake, Toms River, Howell, and the greater Ocean and Monmouth County area to favorably settle, and modify, their alimony agreements.
If you are considering retirement, or have experienced any other change in circumstance which may warrant a modification of your alimony agreement, we are ready to begin helping you today. Our smaller size allows us to provide personal and attentive service to our clients, while charging fair and reasonable rates for our services.
To speak with our law office today regarding your alimony or alimony modification issue, please contact us online or through our Brick, NJ office at 732-812-3102.