Urban Legend: Spousal Support (Alimony) automatically terminates upon the remarriage of the receiving spouse.
This legend is based on accurate historical information that is no longer true. Spousal Maintenance, formerly called Alimony, used to terminate upon the remarriage and sometimes even upon the cohabitation of the receiving spouse. Case law in Vermont changed that. While it is possible, although unusual, to put a termination clause in a Marital Settlement Agreement, the courts now consider modifications or terminations of spousal support based on whether or not the financial circumstances of the receiving party have significantly improved due to the remarriage. Remarriage to a multi-millionaire might be a sufficient basis on which to reduce or terminate support. Remarriage to a person with no means or average means may not change the receiving party’s financial circumstance in any meaningful way and therefore will not form the basis for a modification.