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In Georgia, after a divorce matter has been concluded and a Final Judgment and Decree of Divorce has been entered in the matter, an action for a modification of alimony may be filed by either of the former spouses in order to seek a reduction or increase in the amount of alimony paid by one former spouse the other. Georgia law permits alimony to be modified for two main reasons:
- Upon the petition of one of the former spouses, based on a change in the income or financial status of either former spouse. See O.C.G.A. §§ 19-6-19 and 19-6-18. See also Douglas v. Cook, 266 Ga. 644 (1996).
- Upon the petition of one of the former spouses (normally the obligated spouse), where the former spouse who receives alimony is voluntarily cohabitating – openly and continuously – with a third party in a sexual or romantic relationship. O.C.G.A. § 19-6-19(a) and (b). See also Quillen v. Quillen, 265 Ga. 779 (1995).
Regardless of the foundation for the alimony modification claim, there are certain requirements that must be met and procedures that must be adhered to in order to validly and successfully assert a claim for the modification of alimony. For more detailed information regarding the modification of alimony based on the two reasons outlined above, see our articles entitled: “Modification of Alimony: Requirements for and Evidence to Prove Modification Claim” and “Modification of Alimony: Live in Lover Law.”
Requirements for & Evidence to Prove Modification Claim
As generally discussed in our article entitled “Modification of Child support: Requirements,” there are several requirements that must be met before a party may successfully assert a claim for the modification of child support. Because the sections of Georgia law concerning the modification of child support also govern the modification of alimony, the requirements for a claim to modify alimony almost mirror the requirements to assert a claim for the modification of child support…(continue reading).
Live in Lover Law
One basis for a claim for the modification of alimony in Georgia is what is colloquially referred to as the “live in lover” statute. According to the Official Code of Georgia concerning the modification of alimony…(continue reading).
Procedure for Modifying Alimony
In Georgia, the procedure for filing a Petition for the Modification of Alimony are very similar to the procedure that must be followed to file a Complaint for Divorce. O.C.G.A. §§ 19-6-18(a) and 19-6-19(a)…(continue reading).
Alimony Modification Attorney Fees
According to Georgia law, in cases regarding the modification of alimony, or spousal support, the court presiding over the matter may award attorney’s fees, court costs and other expenses of litigation to the party who ultimately prevails in the matter. O.C.G.A. § 19-6-19(b)…(continue reading).