Cohabitation and Termination of Spousal Support

Cohabitation and Termination of Spousal Support

Does Cohabitation of My Ex-Spouse Terminate Spousal Support in Missouri, Illinois, Kansas, or Oklahoma?

In some divorce cases, a court might determine that one spouse should pay spousal support/maintenance (formerly known as alimony) to their ex-spouse.  In other cases, the parties might agree through a settlement that spousal support should be paid.

When spousal support is paid, it can be modifiable or for a set-term known as contactual maintenance.  When spousal support is modifiable, it is generally payable for indefinite duration.  It usually continues until a change of circumstances of a substantial and continuing nature.  Alteratively, spousal support can terminate upon remarriage, death or, in some instances, cohabitation.

When Does Child Support Terminate Due To Cohabitation?

Many wrongly assume that if they can prove that their ex-spouse is cohabitating with another individual that their spousal support will automatically terminate.  To many individuals, they assume this is the case — and an automatic out of maintenance.  The reality is that this is not necessarily that simple.

In Missouri, cohabitation does not automatically terminate maintenance.  Cohabitation can only terminate maintenance if it can be shown that the cohabitation is a “substitute for marriage.”  Generally, this will require a showing that parties have commingled their assets, have made each other beneficiaries on their wills and have engaged in other actions that make it a substitute for marriage.

In Illinois, courts look to whether the cohabitation is on a “resident, continuing and conjugal basis.”  The an answer to this question is not always straight-forward and fact specific.  To come to this determination, courts look at factors, like:

1) the length of the relationship;

2) the amount of time the couple spends together;

3) the nature of activities engaged in;

4) the interrelation of their personal affairs;

5) whether they vacation together; and

6) whether they spend holidays together.

In Kansas, a party generally needs to show that their ex-spouse is living together as husband and wife and mutual assumption of those marital rights, duties and obligations which are usually manifested by married people, including but not necessarily dependent on sexual relations.

In Oklahoma, the court will generally only modify alimony when the supported spouse’s financial condition has improved due to the cohabitation. Of course, this requires evidence.

Succeeding under these standards is not necessarily easy.  However, there are fact patterns where cohabitation can result in a termination of maintenance.

Do You Need Help With A Maintenance Matter Involving Cohabitation in Missouri, Illinois, Kansas and Oklahoma in St. Louis, Kansas City, Columbia, Springfield, Wichita, Tulsa and beyond?

If you are interested in seeking counsel to terminate maintenance due to cohabitation, Stange Law Firm, PC can help.  We have lawyers who have experience in this area and can help.  We can help you analyze whether you may have a basis to file a motion to terminate maintenance.  We can also help you develop a strategy to ensure you have the best possible chance.

Alternatively, if you have been served a motion to terminate your maintenance and you need counsel, we can help you assess your options as well.  In some cases, your ex-spouse might wrongly believe you are cohabitating, but perhaps that is not the case.

If you need assistance with a spousal maintenance case, contact us online or call us at 855-805-0595.

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Helpful Information On Child Support Matters

On our webpage, we also have pages on various other topics involving support that might be helpful to you, including the pages below and those on our menu:
Missouri child support calculator
If you are looking for a child support estimate in Missouri, we have a sample Form 14 on our webpage that can help give you a general idea in terms of child support numbers for your case.
Illinois child support calculator
If you are interested in obtaining a child support estimate in Illinois, on our webpage, we have a sample Illinois child support calculator. This might be helpful in terms of giving you a general idea of child support in your case.
Kansas child support chart
If you are interested in obtaining a child support estimate in Kansas, we have a simple chart on our webpage. This might be helpful in giving an approximation.
Oklahoma child support chart
If you are interested in obtaining a child support estimate in Oklahoma, we have a simple chart on our webpage. This might be helpful in giving an approximation.
Informational support videos
We have information child support videos from some live seminars that we have hosted on our webpage that you can view.
Child support emancipation
If you are interested in know how child support emancipation works, we have information on our webpage that you can view.
College education and child support
The cost of college and university education can be an important component of child support in divorce and custody cases. Our lawyers can assist if the cost of education is an issue in your case.
Modification of child support
In some cases, the court has issued a child support order. After the passage of time, it might be important to seek a modification where there have been changed circumstances of a substantial and continuing basis. You can discuss this with our lawyers if you think a modification might be appropriate in your case.
Modification of spousal support (alimony/maintenance)
Spousal maintenance can be ordered at the conclusion of a divorce. In some cases, the parties might need to seek a modification and/or termination of a maintenance order. Our lawyers can assist in many instances.
Daycare and child support
In divorce and custody cases where there are young children, the cost of daycare or childcare can be an important issue. Our lawyers can help you work through these issues.
Dependency exemptions
The dependency exemptions can be important for many divorcing parties or unmarried couples. Our lawyers can represent you in these circumstances.
Division of Child Support Enforcement
Many child support matters end up being addressed through state administrative agencies. Our lawyers can help represent you before state child support agencies.
Wage withholding orders and garnishments
In some cases, child support can be paid either through a wage withholding order or garnishment. Our lawyers can help you navigate the process.
Serving the St. Louis Metropolitan Area, Kansas City, Columbia, Springfield, Wichita, Topeka, Tulsa and Beyond in Missouri, Illinois, Kansas and Oklahoma

From our webpage, you can also read articles about family law, view informational videos, seminar videos, listen to our podcast, download our mobile application or view support calculators for MissouriIllinois and Kansas.

If you are looking to find and hire a child custody lawyer, contact us online or by phone to schedule a consultation at any of our convenient locations.

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