How to not have my alimony terminated with cohabitation?

Asked over 1 year ago - Murrieta, CA

I'm about to go to court to finalize my divorce and determine my alimony & arrears. 5 years ago the court ordered a temporary spousal support order but my ex never paid it (5 years owed in arrearage).

My boyfriend has been living with me for the past 2 years. My "cohabitant" does not contribute to my household financially and does not affect my need for spousal support. He is unemployed and his unemployment benefits have expired. There is no financial contribution from my "cohabitant" that could be used against me, by saying that I can now maintain the same standard of living as during marriage without the supporting spouse's help.

How should I defend my spousal support further & is it a good leg to stand on stating that he's unemployed? Maybe the ex won't know to bring it up!

Attorney answers (2)

  1. Holly J Moore


    Contributor Level 10


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . I recently wrote a blog post about spousal support and cohabitation (if you google "holly Moore attorney" my blog will probably come up and you can check it out). The gist is that cohabitation is only a "presumption" to modify and/or terminate support, it's not automatic. So you can defeat the presumption basically by proving that your financial need for support has not changed since when the support was originally ordered.

  2. Gregory Paul Benton

    Contributor Level 20


    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . Never assume the other side will ignore a potential fact that would help their case. You need legal assistance on this and to collect the arrearages.

Related Topics


Divorce is the process of formally ending a marriage. Divorces may be jointly agreed upon, resolved by negotiation, or decided in court.


Alimony is the regular monetary allowance one ex-spouse may be required to pay the other after a divorce.

Howard M Lewis

Paying Alimony (Spousal Support)

Alimony, also known as maintenance or spousal support, refers to payments made by one spouse to the other after a couple divorces. These payments are for living expenses and/or child... more

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