Financial agreements are part of the divorce. One of the agreements usually concerns partner or child alimony: contribution to the cost of living for the child or ex-partner. When the ex-partners jointly or one of them files for divorce, an alimony calculation is included. The law does not contain any rules on the calculation of alimony payments. That is why the so-called “Trema standards” drawn up by the judges are the starting point for this. The need and capacity are at the basis of this calculation. The need refers to the well-being that the ex-partner and the children were used to before the divorce. Usually, after the divorce, it is not possible for the ex-partner to provide the well-being at the same level because the financial space or the capacity to do so is too limited. Child alimony usually takes precedence over partner alimony. If after this determination there is still some financial capacity left, it can be used for any partner alimony.
The partner or child alimony is calculated on the basis of the current situation of the ex-partners. However, after the divorce, this situation and with it the capacity to pay may change over time. There can be various reasons for this. In this context you can think of, for example, getting married to a new partner or a lower income due to dismissal. In addition, initial alimony may have been determined on the basis of incorrect or incomplete data. In that case, it may be necessary to have the alimony recalculated. Although it is often not the intention, recalculating any kind of alimony can bring up old problems or create new financial problems for the ex-partner, so that tensions between the ex-partners can build up again. It is therefore advisable to submit the changed situation to and have the recalculation of the alimony carried out by a mediator. Law & More’s mediators are happy to help you with this. Law & More’s mediators will guide you through consultations, guarantee legal and emotional support, take the interests of both parties into consideration and then record your joint agreements.
Sometimes, however, mediation does not lead to the desired solution between the ex-partners and thus new agreements about the recalculation of the alimony. In that case, the step to court is obvious. Do you want to take this step to court? Then you always need a lawyer. The lawyer can then request the court to change the alimony obligation. In that case, your ex-partner will have six weeks to submit a statement of defence or a counter-request. The court can then change the maintenance, that is to say increase, decrease or set it to nil. According to the law, this requires a “change of circumstances”. Such changed circumstances are, for example, the following situations:
- dismissal or unemployment
- relocation of the children
- new or different work
- remarry, cohabit or enter into a registered partnership
- change in the parental access regime
Because the law does not precisely define the concept of “change of circumstances”, it may also include circumstances other than those mentioned above. However, this does not apply to situations in which you choose to work less or simply get a new partner, without living together, getting married or entering into a registered partnership.
Does the judge find that there is no change in circumstances? Then your request will not be granted. Is there any change in circumstances? Then of course your request will be granted. Incidentally, your request will be granted immediately and without adjustments if there is no response from your ex-partner to it. The decision usually follows between four and six weeks after the hearing. In its decision, the judge will also indicate the day from which any newly determined amount in partner or child maintenance is due. In addition, the court may determine that the change in maintenance will take place with retroactive effect. Do you disagree with the judge’s decision? Then you can appeal within 3 months.
Do you have questions about the alimony, or would you like to have the alimony recalculated? Then contact Law & More. At Law & More, we understand that divorce and subsequent events can have profound consequences for your life. That is why we have a personal approach. Together with you and possibly your ex-partner, we can determine your legal situation during the conversation on the basis of the documentation and try to map out and then record your vision or wishes with regard to the recalculation of the alimony. We can also legally assist you in any alimony procedure. Law & More’s lawyers are experts in the field of persons and family law and are happy to guide you through this process, possibly together with your partner.