When should I ask for a spousal support modification?
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When should I ask for a spousal support modification?

After your divorce, you may decide that you do not like the spousal support arrangement. Whether you pay or receive support, you will need to request a modification from the court if you want it to change.

The Judicial Branch of California explains you cannot ask for a support modification just because you want one. You must have proper grounds upon which to ask the court to make changes.

Significant changes

In order to ask the court for a modification, you must have something about your circumstances or those of your former spouse change significantly. This does not mean a small income change or that you do not like the original agreement. Those are not valid reasons.

In general, a significant change will be a large increase or decrease in income. However, changes may also include a change in relationship status for the person receiving support.

Modification request

You should ask for the change as soon as possible. The court will not retroactively apply a change, so you need to ask for a modification right away to get the new order in place. This can help to lessen the financial burden. Waiting to make your request will delay the changes and keep your current agreement in place. Nothing will change until you have a new court order. You can always cancel your case if your circumstances change again, so it is better to get on the court docket rather than wait.

Requesting a spousal support modification is an option for you or your former spouse. However, to make a request, you must have a proper reason.


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