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This week, our family lawyers discuss a Maryland woman who wants her ex-husband to now pay her alimony.

The Question: How can I get ex-husband to pay alimony after the divorce is final? (He & poster’s ex-caregiver are now in a relationship, poster was abandoned, is in economic straits and disabled — is any of that relevant from a legal perspective?)

How do I take my husband back to court for spousal support after the divorce?

Him and my ex caregiver are now in a relationship. I was abandoned and I’m disabled. I cannot make it financially as I only get $784 a month?

The Answer: Was the alimony ordered in the divorce? If not then they are out of luck. If the alimony was awarded, they can file for contempt.

If not included in the finalized divorce, the quick and short of it is, then you cannot take your ex back to court for spousal support. When seeking alimony in Maryland, it must be asked for in the divorce proceedings before the order becomes final.

The Maryland Court of Appeals notes “that the right to claim alimony is extinguished at the time of the severance of the marital relationship.”

It may be possible to modify the amount of alimony paid, but there has to be mention of that in the divorce decree. The court is bound by the divorce order and what it includes. If it doesn’t include alimony or the ability to modify, then you are up the creek without the proverbial paddle.

You did not mention if alimony is or is not included in the divorce order. So, we will answer both scenarios.

If you agree for your ex to pay you alimony, and the agreement is incorporated into an Order of Court, then they could be held in contempt of court. You and your attorney can file contempt charges with the court, and they could take action to make him comply and pay.

Otherwise, your ex has no obligation to pay you alimony if you did not seek it during the divorce.

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Our automatic disclaimer: We’re lawyers, but not necessarily your lawyer, and do not represent the individual who asked this question. We’re providing this information for general educational purposes based on the publicly available information provided by the anonymous Internet user. Any number of details may change how this individual’s attorney may pursue this legal situation, differently from how we suppose above. If you have a similar question, then you should consult with a lawyer about your specific situation to get a “real” response!