My ex-spouse received a large inheritance. Are they still entitled to spousal support?
I have not been retained as your attorney so I cannot give you legal advice. However, I can offer some general information that may help you.
If Colorado is similar to the state that I am licensed to practice in, Arkansas—which is the state where I practice—then the primary factor the courts in my state will consider in making or changing any spousal support award is the need of one spouse and the ability of the other spouse to pay.
The following are secondary factors that the court will consider: (1) financial circumstances of both parties; (2) the couple’s past standard of living; (3) the amount and nature of the parties’ current and anticipated incomes; (4) the extent and nature of each person’s resources and assets; (5) the amount of income of each party that is spendable; (6) the health condition and medical needs of each party; (7) the duration of the marriage; (8) the amount of any child support award; and (9) the earning ability and capacity of each party. Additionally, in my state, the trial court may consider in their decision on whether to award spousal support, additional factors based in light of the particular factors of the individual case.
If you want to modify an original order, then you can file a “Motion to Modify Spousal Support” with the court that ordered the original order. A Motion is a written request to the court. In Arkansas, you will have to show the court that there is reason to terminate or modify the current spousal support obligation because there has been a “significant and material change of circumstances.” Your basis for the “significant and material” change will be the substantial inheritance your ex-spouse has recently received.
Dan Pearce is an Online Editor for Lexicon, focusing on subjects related to the legal services of customers, Cordell & Cordell and Cordell Planning Partners. He has written countless pieces on MensDivorce.com, detailing the plight of men and fathers going through the divorce experience, as well as the issues seniors and their families experience throughout the estate planning journey on ElderCareLaw.com. Mr. Pearce has managed websites and helped create content, such as the Men’s Divorce Newsletter and the YouTube series, “Men’s Divorce Countdown.” He also has been a contributor on both the Men’s Divorce Podcast and ElderTalk with TuckerAllen.
Mr. Pearce assisted in fostering a Cordell Planning Partners practice area specific for Veterans, as they deal with the intricacies of their benefits while planning for the future. He also helped create the Cordell Planning Partners Resource Guide and the Cordell Planning Partners Guide to Alternative Residence Options, specific for seniors with questions regarding their needs and living arrangements.