This is the final post in a series of articles discussing spousal support or alimony awards in Little Rock, Arkansas. Our previous post discussed the circumstances under which a party may request a modification to an alimony award. Requests are typically permitted if one or both parties have experienced a material change in circumstances unless they have expressly agreed that the award is non-modifiable in the future. Whether circumstances have changed significantly enough to warrant a modification is a matter for the Judge to decide and will be based upon objective evidence presented by the parties. With so much at stake, it is important to retain an attorney with experience in divorce and alimony cases to represent your interests. If you need assistance, contact our office today to speak with a lawyer.
This series discussed the following key topics:
- Understanding Arkansas’ alimony laws
- How underemployment may impact a spousal support award
- How a settlement agreement may affect alimony
- The importance of discovery in a spousal support case
- Seeking modification of an alimony determination
Many divorcing couples are unclear about how Arkansas Courts view alimony awards. When heading into the divorce process, it is important to have a basic understanding for a variety of reasons. First, depending upon one’s circumstances, receiving or being ordered to pay alimony can have significant financial consequences. Understanding what the Court will consider when reviewing this issue can help parties avoid unexpected surprises. Second, when one party is intentionally “underemployed” for the sole purpose of reducing a spousal support obligation, the Court may require them to make such payments as if they were making their normal wages. Third, divorces are commonly resolved through negotiated settlement agreements. It is essential to review any settlement with an attorney, particularly to understand how your alimony rights may be impacted. Fourth, as with other legal proceedings, parties must support their cases through objective evidence. Such evidence is often obtained by each party’s attorney through the discovery process. Finally, it may become necessary to seek a change in an alimony award in the future. Parties should anticipate this issue and be sure to address whether changes may be permitted and under what circumstances down the road.
Our firm has experience handling divorce cases involving spousal support awards. If you need assistance, contact our office today to speak to a Little Rock lawyer. We also handle matters in Fayetteville, Fort Smith, Springdale, Jonesboro, North Little Rock, Conway, Rogers, Pine Bluff, and throughout the rest of Arkansas.