Can I reduce the maintenance I pay my ex?

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“Can I reduce the maintenance I pay my ex?” is a question that solicitor Paul Jordan frequently hears. Paul specialises in the financial aspects of divorce and separation and in this article he looks at whether maintenance payments made to a former spouse under a ‘joint lives’ order can ever be reduced.

The courts often make what are known as ‘joint lives’ maintenance orders on divorce. This requires you to pay maintenance to your ex until one of you die, or your ex remarries.

These maintenance orders can cause resentment, especially where the ex treats it as a meal ticket.

When a joint lives maintenance order has been made are you really locked into it for life? And what happens if your own financial circumstances change?

Well the good news is that maintenance orders can be varied. In some situations they can even be terminated.

Your prospects of getting the court to agree a reduction in the maintenance you pay your ex will be improved if your financial situation has declined since the original order was made. This could be due to retirement or a change of career for instance.

We can assist you with making an application to the court to vary your maintenance payments and put the strongest case forward. We will not only look at your ability to pay, but also the needs of your ex. Do they still need the same level of maintenance that was originally awarded?

Although your capital assets probably won’t be taken into account if capital claims were previously dealt with by the court, it will be relevant if your ex has acquired capital themselves, through an inheritance for example.

If the evidence is in your favour then your ex may well be advised by their solicitor to agree to a variation of the maintenance they receive, or at least to sit round a table with you at a mediation. If agreement cannot be reached however then the application will need to be considered by a judge. If this is necessary then we can either represent you ourselves or appoint a specialist barrister to do so.

So, if you are wondering “Can I reduce the maintenance I pay my ex?” and would like to know whether you have a good case for achieving a reduction then call divorce solicitor Paul Jordan for a free initial assessment.  Paul is always available for a preliminary chat on an informal basis and will be happy to give you an idea of the legal fees that are likely to be involved. Give him a call on 0808 139 1606 or email [email protected]