Three things to know about post-divorce modifications

It can take a long time to get to the end of a divorce. When a California resident receives their final divorce decree, they may look forward to the days of their future when they do not have to think about negotiating to end their marriage. However, for some individuals, the peace that comes with finishing a divorce is short lived. Many individuals must modify their final divorce decrees in the months and years that follow the end of their marriages.

This informational post will introduce its readers to 3 important pieces of information about post-divorce modifications. Readers are encouraged to talk to their divorce and family law attorneys about their post-divorce modification needs, as the contents of this post do not provide any legal advice.

1. Post-divorce modifications can cover many different divorce matters

When an individual seeks to modify their final divorce decree, they do not have to change all of the decree’s terms. Generally, the individual will seek to change specific terms or even a single term in order to better suit their current life. Common divorce matters that are subject to post-divorce modification proceedings include property division, child custody and support, and spousal support.

2. There must be a reason for a party to seek a post-divorce modification

Post-divorce modifications must be grounded in solid bases for requesting such changes. For example, when a person who pays their ex spousal support loses their job, they may petition to have their support order modified because they can no longer afford to maintain it. Post-divorce modifications generally require a showing that the circumstances of the party or parties have changed and that the modifications are necessary to remain fair. They should not be sought for vindictive or punitive reasons.

3. Seeking a post-divorce modification may involve going to court

Following a divorce, an individual may never want to go back to court again for any reason. However, it may be necessary for a party to take their post-divorce modification request to court to ensure that it is officially included as a change to their divorce decree. Parties can informally agree to alter the terms of their divorce proceedings, but those agreements may not carry judicial authority. For a person who wishes to officially change their divorce decree and give the decision enforceability options, court intervention may be necessary.

It can be difficult to consider going back to court to change a divorce decree, but it is often necessary to ensure that individuals, their children, and other related parties are given fair opportunities to thrive following the end of a marriage. Individuals who have questions about post-divorce modifications should direct their inquiries to their divorce attorneys.