The length of time for you to pay alimony to your former spouse could last for a long period. However, sometimes life events can cut alimony short. Such an event may happen if your ex decides to get married again.
According to the state of Massachusetts, a material change in the need for alimony can cause a court to reduce or terminate further spousal support. Your former spouse forming a new relationship with someone could qualify as a material change.
A new marriage and alimony
Family courts award alimony so that spouses do not face a sudden degradation in their standard of living after the marriage ends. It is natural that a court would award support to your ex if your spouse depended on your income.
However, things may change if your former spouse gets married to a new person. In this situation, the state will generally end alimony for the remarried spouse. While unusual circumstances may dictate a continuance of support, a court will probably release you from making additional support payments.
Cohabitation and alimony
The situation may not be as clear if your ex starts living with a new romantic partner. Your former spouse might not have entered into marriage, but your ex is receiving financial and material support as a result of the relationship.
The state may not change your alimony at first. However, if three months pass and your ex is still cohabitating, a court might consider your request to reduce or terminate further support. Basically, if your ex is in a married relationship or an arrangement that echoes marital status, you might have a case that your support is no longer necessary.