I have a Separation Agreement with a clause for alimony payments in the event that my income is reduced. I was laid off work Oct 18, 2011. The clause is as follows:
In the event that Husband’s total income from all sources in any year shall drop, Husband’s obligation for Alimony payments shall be reduced by the same percentage that his gross income has dropped. For example, if Husband’s average monthly gross income is reduced by five percent (5%) in any given year, then Husband shall reduce his monthly Alimony obligation by five percent (5%) begnning the next year. Prior to any reduction in Alimony payments, Husband shall provide Wife with a filed tax return, which illustrates the reduction in total gross income and a written statement indicating the new amount to be paid with a mathematical formula illustrating the reduction in Alimony. Husband shall not be entitiled to any credit for a reduction of his gross income for the prior year:reductions are to be calculaed on a yearly basis.
How should I apply the above clause? The only income I have right now is $1,018 per month from unemployment. I received 1 mth severance pay and 5 weeks unused vacation when I was laid off on Oct 18th. The confusing part to me is that I will not have a tax return that reflects my reduced pay until March of 2013 when I file my 2012 tax return (assuming it takes me awhile to find a job). My income has gone from $10,000/mth to $1,018/mth. My alimony payment is $1,100/mth. Can I just start paying her $110/mth alimony on Jan 1st 2012 since I have had a 90% reduction in pay?
Thanks very much for your feedback!