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Options for unaffordable support payments

Are you paying child support or spousal support? Are you concerned that the payments are simply not affordable at this time?

Keep paying what you can. Anything you don't pay can be considered a debt, and legal action could be taken. Instead of stopping the payments on your own, take the time to do this the right way. There are options for you.

First of all, you may want to simply talk to your ex. If he or she is understanding and knows you honestly can't afford what was ordered initially, you can agree to modify it. You simply have to sign some paperwork that makes it official. A word-of-mouth alteration is not enough.

It can also be wise to look at the initial order, as there may be a situation in which what you owe is terminated. For example, you may no longer have to pay spousal support if your spouse married someone else. If you're not sure about these types of stipulations, take some time to go back over the paperwork to see what may help.

If all else fails, you can go to the court and ask for a modification. This can be authorized even if your ex does not want the change to be made. You'll have to prove that you can't make the current payments. As noted, though, it does help to show that you've at least been trying. The judge may not be too lenient if you've clearly just been skipping payments out of spite or irresponsibly.

As you can see, understanding your legal options makes a huge difference. Money issues can be stressful, but be sure you take the time to really consider what can be done in Connecticut.

Source: Divorce Magazine, "3 Steps to Take if You Can't Afford Child or Spousal Support," Matthew Smurda, accessed Aug. 31, 2016

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