Divorcing a spouse is complicated in many ways and encompasses and affects every part of a family’s life. In Alabama, there have been significant changes in divorce law in the past couple of years. Here are some things you’ll need to know before filing.
One of the big changes is in the alimony law. If you settled your divorce after January 1, 2019, alimony is no longer deductible. Before the changes, the person paying alimony could deduct those costs on their income tax, and the person receiving alimony had to claim it on their taxes. All of that has now changed with the new law.
In many cases, before the law changed, alimony would be taken out of the largest paycheck and paid to the spouse making less money. Now, the benefit to the paying spouse is gone; not only will you pay the alimony, you’ll also pay the taxes as well.
College tuition for a child has also changed under the law. Up until now, a judge could order a parent to pay a child’s college tuition. This law changed a few years ago, and it did away with college expenses in a divorce decree. The two parties may agree that one or the other will pay expenses, but it can no longer be ordered so by a judge.
What happens after a divorce is final and circumstances change? This is where divorce modification comes into play. It often times has to do with a child custody agreement, but may also include alimony.
A judge will look for substantial change in the situation, such as: a spouse who wasn’t working but now is fully employed, or a parent who has a drug or alcohol problem, or where the custodial parent wants to move away so that the non-custodial parent cannot see the child. In other words, there must be big changes, not nit-picky things before a judge will order a modification.
These are just a few of the issues that will come up during a divorce proceeding. If you have questions about these or other family court issues, please consult our Online Legal Directory to find an attorney in your area.