Once two people decide to get a divorce and legally part ways, they will begin to ask themselves many questions before the actual divorce proceedings get underway.
Among the most common is: How will alimony be determined?
Also known as spousal support, alimony is an obligation of one party to provide financial support to the other party after divorce has been finalized. A host of alimony types are permitted under Florida statute: temporary, transitional, bridge the gap, lump sum, rehabilitative, and permanent.
Who is entitled to what can depend on many factors. According to F.S. 61.08, they may include:
-The standard of living established during the marriage.
-The duration of the marriage.
-The age and the physical and emotional condition of each party.
-The financial resources of each party, including the nonmarital and the marital assets and liabilities distributed to each.
-The earning capacities, educational levels, vocational skills, and employability of the parties and, when applicable, the time necessary for either party to acquire sufficient education or training to enable such party to find appropriate employment.
-The contribution of each party to the marriage, including, but not limited to, services rendered in homemaking, child care, education, and career building of the other party.
-The responsibilities each party will have with regard to any minor children they have in common.
-The tax treatment and consequences to both parties of any alimony award, including the designation of all or a portion of the payment as a nontaxable, nondeductible payment.
-All sources of income available to either party, including income available to either party through investments of any asset held by that party.
-Any other factor necessary to do equity and justice between the parties.
But once a divorce decree has been determined, it is also possible for alimony payments to be modified later on if certain circumstances change. For example, recent changes in Florida law now state that alimony can be reduced or terminated if a former spouse is living with someone as though they are married.
Alimony is only one factor that courts and divorce attorneys consider when determining a divorce settlement. It is of course, however, a very important factor.
Whether someone is potentially receiving or potentially paying alimony, it is important to contact an experienced attorney who can fight for his or her client’s best interests.
Raleigh “Lee” Greene is an attorney that focuses on complex divorce cases. To contact a St. Petersburg divorce lawyer, Clearwater divorce attorney, or Tampa divorce lawyer, visit Tampabaydivorcefirm.com or call (727) 821-2900.