What to Do If Your Ex Falls Behind on Alimony Payments
Under Florida law (Florida Statutes § 61.08), one spouse may be ordered to pay their former partner alimony following a marital separation. As a general rule, this tends to occur when the marriage lasted for a substantial period of time and there is a gap in the current and future economic prospects of each party.
The spouse receiving alimony relies on that income. When expected alimony payments suddenly stop coming, the disruption can cause a considerable amount of financial distress. If your ex stopped paying alimony, you have legal options available. In this article, our experienced Tampa family lawyers explain what you should do if your former spouse has stopped making alimony payments.
- Document Lack of Payment or Underpayment
First and foremost, it is imperative that you carefully document any missed payments or underpayment. Write down when payments were missed and how much is owed. Additionally, you should document any correspondence you have had with your former spouse regarding the missed alimony payments. Should you need to go to court to get alimony enforced, the more evidence you have, the better off you will be.
- Do Not Let Violations Persist
Of course, alimony payments that are two or three days late are not always cause for concern. Still, you should not let violations of your right to receive persist without being challenged. If your ex spouse is more than 30 days behind on alimony payments and you have not reached a legally binding agreement to recoup the full and fair alimony that you are owed, it is time to consider taking legal action, The more payments that are missed, the more difficult it will be to recover the full spousal support that you rightfully deserve.
- Know Your Collection Options
There are several different options available that can be used to collect on delinquent alimony. What option makes the most sense in your case depends on a number of different factors. An experienced Tampa, FL alimony lawyer can assess all available options. Typically, it is best to try to collect past due alimony at the lowest level, only escalating to court when all other options have failed. For reference, your options for collecting delinquent spousal support include:
- Negotiating a voluntary settlement with your ex;
- Seeking a contempt of court finding;
- Obtaining a wage garnishment order; and
- Enforcing alimony through a qualified domestic relations order (QDRO).
Remember, court-mandated alimony is not optional. Your former party has a legal obligation to make those payments. If they have the financial means to do so, they cannot decide to withhold funds.
Call Our Tampa Spousal Support Lawyers Today
At Bubley & Bubley, P.A., our Florida alimony lawyers are standing, ready to protect your rights. If your former partner has fallen behind on spousal support payments, you have legal options available. For a confidential initial consultation, please contact our legal team today. From our office location in Tampa, we serve communities throughout the area, including Brooksville, Safety Harbor, Holiday, Trilby, and. Crystal Beach.