Subject: Spousal maintenance Posted: Thursday, December 5, 2013 - 12:54:15
What are the rules re the above? Is it only paid now in \'big money\' cases? I have 3 children for which I happily pay through the CSA. I have an old consent order for spousal maintenance which I have never paid (I wrote to my X stating that i could not afford it 2 months after the order, and she accepted that) which I am now seeking to have officially discharged at court. The reason i need it officially discharged is that my X is currently angry, and has applied to court stating that i am 3 years in arrears for spousal maintenance (which technically i am). Will i need to pay the arrears? Will i be able to discharge the order?
No, SM isn\'t just paid in big money cases. Generally speaking it isn\'t paid when someone is on average or below average earnings because there won\'t be a huge difference in incomes when the parent with care\'s tax credits and/or state benefits are taken into account. For people on above average earnings SM is a possibility if there is a discrepancy in incomes but the overall position has to be considered.
I\'m afraid a court order is an order of the court and arrears are enforceable, although a court might look at evidence that circumstances have changed since the order was made. Likewise with the term of the order, if there is evidence the situation has changed the court might change the term or discharge the order.