During a separation or divorce, one spouse can be required to pay an allowance that is ordered by the Court.
This payment is known as alimony or also known as spousal support or maintenance. Likewise, alimony may be paid during and after the case is over.
Also, in the state of Florida, no matter which spouse, you can request alimony and you may be forced to pay it depending on the situation.
With Parker & DuFresne representing you, we look over the wide variety of factors that are used to determine what type and how much support should be paid.
Financial support is ordered to assist the lower-income spouse with periodic payments or a lump sum.
Your alimony lawyer will walk you through the entire process.
The Court is Deciding
Alimony can be established by the consent of the parties in a settlement agreement or by the Court after a hearing.
A judge does not automatically award financial support payments when you reside in the state of Florida. Only in situations where payment is the most appropriate option will the court rule for alimony.
Based on the needs of both parties, the judge will decide.
There is no standard for alimony, and every case is different.
How to Determine Alimony
Certain factors affect the need and amount of spousal support. Here are the main factors.
- Duration of the marriage
- Standard of living while married
- Age of each spouse
- Each spouse’s role in the marriage
- The general health of both spouses
- Each spouse’s contribution to the marriage including childcare, homemaking, education and helping the other spouse build his or her career
- Any tax consequences of the alimony award
- Childcare responsibilities of each spouse after the divorce
- The income of each party
- Education of each party
One way of determining what kind of financial support you are eligible for is the length of your marriage. Generally, Florida identifies the marriage lengths as follows:
- short-term marriage is fewer than seven years,
- moderate-term marriage falls from seven to 16 years, and
- a long-term marriage is any period longer than 17 years.
Types of Alimony
Not all alimony is permanent, every case is unique. Likewise, as your alimony lawyer or family law attorney will explain after looking over your information, there are many options.
Following a long-term marriage, support is paid until the spouse dies or until the recipient spouse remarries or cohabits with another person.
As the name defines it, this is a provisional payment based on either party’s standard of living and ability to pay.
Bridge-the-gap or “short-term”
Transitioning from married to single life brings in financial difficulties. So, short-term support helps during this period.
Life does not stop during a divorce. Rehabilitative alimony covers education, training, and or certification costs necessary for a spouse to enter or re-enter the workforce.
Though not permanent, durational alimony lasts for a more extended period. This form of support may not extend beyond the length of the marriage.
A lump sum award is as the name implies. It is paid once and is not modifiable.
Representation in Alimony Cases
Every divorce case is unique, and your lawyer can work with you through a variety of things.
For example, if the other party is trying to hide income to avoid paying any prenuptial agreements that may address support.
First, we will discuss all aspects of your marriage with you to decide if you could receive alimony or if you are required to pay.
Likewise, our team works with clients throughout Northern Florida, and we will represent you during this trying time.
So, Contact us for a free consultation with our lawyers.