Do You Need Help with Spousal Support Enforcement? – Part 2

August 31st, 2016

In part one of this two-part series, we looked at ways divorce lawyers in Portland Oregon can help you if your ex-spouse fails to pay spousal support.

divorce agreementThose two ways, both of which involve going back to court, are civil contempt of court and wage garnishment.

Unfortunately, your quest for spousal support may not end there. A common response for an ex-spouse facing contempt of court or wage garnishment is to seek a downward spousal support modification.

In Oregon, courts are allowed to alter spousal support agreements if the payor can show that there’s been a substantial change in their circumstances. The “substantial change” usually has to be unforeseen.

The most obvious example of an unforeseen substantial change would be the loss of a job or a drastic decrease in wages.

A downward spousal support modification may lead to the collecting of evidence, oral dispositions, and subpoenas to the employer. It may also lead to a trial or hearing on whether spousal support should be modified.

Another action your ex-spouse may take in an effort to avoid paying spousal support is to file for bankruptcy. Bankruptcy, however, does not eliminate one’s responsibility to pay spousal support, it’s not a dischargeable debt. You are entitled to your spousal support before, during, and after your ex-spouse’s bankruptcy proceedings.

Enforcing spousal support, contesting a downward spousal support modification, and dealing with an ex-spouse’s bankruptcy are complex situations that might be best handled by competent divorce lawyers working in and around the Portland Oregon area.

To read part one of this series, click here.

To learn more about spousal support enforcement, or to speak with attorney Ronald Johnston, click here.

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