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Samuel II
Samuel II, Attorney at Law
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 27011
Experience:  General practice of law with emphasis in family law.
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My husband and I are paying his ex-wife 60k year in

Customer Question

My husband and I are paying his ex-wife 60k year in alimony. (There is no child support. All kids are grown.) This amount was determined in court at the time of the divorce 3-12 years ago. His ex-wife has never worked and was 47 at the time of the divorce. She has a small business that brings in 40k a year that she does for a few hours each month. She wanted the divorce, is now living with the boyfriend she had since before the divorce. The amount that was originally set was based on the fact that she had intentions of going to college to get a nursing degree. The judge said she couldn't support herself and would need the money to go to school. Since the divorce 3 years ago, she hasn't gone to school and hasn't worked. The man she is living with is partially supporting her. The divorce took place in Colorado. An attorney recently told my husband that the judge that presided over the case is liberal and inexperienced and that it was "hopeless" for my husband to ever stop paying alimony as he was married for 27 years (he is now 52) and that if he goes back to court to get the amount changed, that he will most likely have to pay more because his income has gone up since the decree, even though her need has gone down and she is living with another man.
My question is this: we would like to get the amount reduced and also not to have to pay her until my husband dies, which I read that sometimes spouses still have to pay alimony even though they have retired. Is it likely that he will have to pay alimony for the rest of his life, and is it "hopeless" that he won't be able to get the amount reduced as stated by his attorney? We just want a straight answer and don't want to go back to court if it's going to cost more.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I meant, ". .. in court at the time of the divorce, 3-1/2 years ago" not 3-12 years ago.
Expert:  Samuel II replied 2 years ago.
HelloThis is Samuel and I will discuss this and provide you information in this regard.DO you know what type of alimony was Order? Was it rehabilitative? Temporary or Permanent?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I don't think it was permanent, but "maintenance" alimony. I read in Colorado that if you are married over 20 years, that you may have to pay until you die. Do you have any more insight? Thanks.
Expert:  Samuel II replied 2 years ago.
HelloThank you for the additional information.The current CO law on modification of spousal maintenance is only effective for orders after Jan 1 2014. Anything prior to that the Order will stand. I suggest that the attorney you consulted was correct. He can file for a Modification based on his retirement, but that it is not guaranteed it will be reduced. I suggest that co habitation is not enough to show that the ex is getting additional support. There would need to be a Re marriage and that would need to be stipulated in the Order that upon re marriage the spousal support would end.This is what the law states:(5) Modification or termination of maintenance. (a) EXCEPT UPON WRITTEN AGREEMENT OF THE PARTIES, AN AWARD OF MAINTENANCE ENTERED PURSUANT TO THIS SECTION MAY BE MODIFIED OR TERMINATED PURSUANT TO THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 14-10-122. THE COURT MAY CONSIDER THE GUIDELINE AMOUNT AND TERM OF MAINTENANCE AND THE STATUTORY FACTORS SET FORTH IN SUBSECTION (3) OF THIS SECTION ONLY IN A MODIFICATION OR TERMINATION PROCEEDING CONCERNING A MAINTENANCE AWARD ENTERED ON OR AFTER JANUARY 1, 2014.You can read that law at this LINK However, again, this most recent change in the law is for those orders on or after the effective date.
Expert:  Samuel II replied 2 years ago.
Under the new guidelines the support for a 20 year marriage could be limited to 10 years. See this link, tooUnfortunately, the new laws will not apply to your situation.