A modification of alimony is permitted by the Florida Statutes. In a recently decided case captioned Kallett v. Kastriner, the Florida Court of Appeal stated that the right to apply for a modification of alimony may only be waived in an agreement if the language in the contract contains a waiver that is clear and unambiguous, or if the agreement is written in a manner that can lead to no other conclusion but that the parties intended there to be a waiver of this right.
In this case, the Husband and Wife were divorced in 2006. The lower court ordered the Husband to pay permanent alimony to his wife. In 2008, the husband and wife entered into an agreement in which they agreed to reduce the Husband’s alimony by $500.00 per month due to the diminution of his income. The lower court approved this agreement. In 2014, the Husband sought another reduction in his alimony. The Wife opposed this reduction unless the Husband was involuntarily unemployed. The Wife argued that the 2008 agreement contained a provision that said that the Husband could only reduce his alimony obligation if he was involuntarily unemployed. The Wife argued that since the Husband was not involuntarily unemployed, he was not entitled to seek a modification. The trial court agreed with the Wife’s construction of this provision and granted the Wife’s Motion for Summary Judgment against the Husband.
In Kallett v. Kastriner, the Florida Court of Appeal stated that unless a party expresses a clear and unambiguous intent to waive his or her right to obtain a modification of alimony, a court cannot find that a party has waived this statutory right. A supplemental petition for modification of alimony should only be denied when the agreement provides an irrevocable and unambiguous waiver of the right to seek a future modification. In this case the agreement stated that the Husband could seek a reduction of his alimony obligation if he was involuntarily unemployed. However, it was unclear as to what period of time this agreement applied. Therefore the Court found that there was no irrevocable and unambiguous intention expressed in the agreement to waive all future modifications.
To speak with a modification of alimony attorney in Boynton Beach , Florida, contact Matthew Lane & Associates, P.A. at (561) 363-3400.