George v. GeorgeAnnotate this Case
Clifford George and Jacquelyn George divorced in 2002. In 2013, Clifford filed a complaint seeking to modify his alimony obligation based on Mass. Gen. Laws ch. 208, 49(b), part of the Alimony Reform Act, which became effective nearly ten years after the parties’ divorce. Section 49(b) provides that general term alimony for certain marriages shall not continue for longer than seventy percent of the number of months of the marriage. A judge can deviate from the durational limit where doing so is required in the interests of justice, and the Act provides a schedule for when complaints for modification based on the new durational limits can be brought for alimony obligations that predated the effective date of the Act. The probate and family court judge denied Clifford’s complaint for modification, finding that deviation beyond the durational limits of the Act was warranted. The Supreme Judicial Court affirmed on other grounds, holding that Clifford’s complaint was filed prematurely.