Spousal support, or alimony, is often hotly contested in divorce cases. It is money paid by one spouse to the other after a divorce to help ensure that both spouses are able to support themselves after the Final Judgment is entered.
While child support in Florida is based on a specific mathematical formula, there are no bright line rules for alimony. In awarding alimony, Florida Courts must consider many factors and two cases with similar facts may not have similar results.
Factors that the Courts will consider to determine if one spouse has a need for alimony and the other has the ability to pay alimony include:
- The length of the marriage;
- The age, physical condition and emotion state of the spouses;
- The standard of living established during the marriage;
- The financial resources of the parties;
- The earning capacity and employability of the parties;
- The contributions that each spouse has made to the marriage
Types Of Alimony In Florida
In the state of Florida, there are five types of spousal support that courts generally award:
- Temporary Alimony: This type of alimony is awarded while the divorce is pending and must end when the Final Judgment of Divorce is entered.
- Bridge-the-Gap Alimony: This type of alimony helps a spouse meet short term needs while transitioning from being married to being single.
- Rehabilitative Alimony: This type of alimony is awarded to help the receiving spouse get the education or training needed to gain new or better employment.
- Durational Alimony: This type of alimony is for a specific length of time not to exceed the length of the marriage.
- Permanent Periodic Alimony: This type of alimony does not have a set end date. It can be awarded after a long-term marriage to provide the more economically-needy spouse with funds to meet their needs.
While spousal support is often paid monthly over time, it can take other forms. It can be paid as one lump sum with no continuing payments. The Court can also order that one party be awarded an asset or ordered to be solely responsible for a marital debt as a form of alimony. Some types of alimony may be modified after the divorce has been finalized if the parties’ financial situations change while others cannot.
When considering divorce, Julie Beth Jouben, P.A., can analyze your unique situation to help you determine which alimony strategy best suits your needs. Contact the law firm at 727-614-0070 or by email to schedule a consultation today.