It is not uncommon for Massachusetts residents to rush through the divorce process. In doing so, things may be left out of the final dissolution settlement that would help one in post-divorce life — such as alimony. If one’s divorce judgment failed to address spousal support, it may still be possible to achieve it with a post-decree alimony request. 

Few people probably realize that this is even an option. One would think that a divorce decree, for the most part, is final — no modifications allowed, expect where children are involved. This is not necessarily the case. When it comes to spousal support, divorce judgment modification is possible if alimony was simply never addressed during the divorce process. 

To seek alimony after a divorce, one has to file the appropriate petition in either the family court where one’s divorce was handled or in the family court in the county where one now resides. There is not an official post-decree spousal support request form. One has to write the petition by oneself or with the assistance of legal counsel. After writing the petition, it needs to be filed in court, fees need to be paid and the request needs to be served to one’s ex. After that, a hearing can be scheduled to address the matter. 

Filing a post-decree alimony request does not guarantee that support will be awarded. The court will look at a number of factors before deciding if awarding alimony is warranted. Massachusetts residents who find themselves needing spousal support but failed to even discuss it during divorce proceedings can turn to an experienced family law attorney who may be able to help them file and fight for divorce judgment modifications. 

Source: mass.gov, “Request alimony for the first time after you are divorced“, Accessed on April 25, 2018