Alimony or "spousal support" is a type of payment that may be ordered for one spouse to pay to the other after a divorce. The purpose of alimony is to alleviate any unfair economic burdens that may befall the lower-wage-earning spouse or the non-wage-earning spouse after a divorce takes place.
In Florida, alimony is determined after the court has equitably distributed the couple's assets and liabilities. Once that division is made, the court will delve into determining whether alimony ought to be paid, by whom and to whom, and what amount, if any. Spousal support can be granted to either the husband or the wife. FindLaw also provides state-specific links to alimony court forms and instructions.
Alimony may also be agreed upon by the spouses. This is possible if the spouses are agreeing upon the terms of their divorce and are able to come up with an alimony payment that would suit both parties' needs. However, it is important to ensure that, even if the parties agree upon alimony, the agreement is presented to the court and made an official part of the court's order.
If this does not happen, it may be difficult to enforce the alimony payments if the paying spouse stops payments in the future. Enforcing an alimony payment against your spouse may require the recipient to file a claim in court and can be a costly process.
The court will take various factors into consideration when determining an alimony award. These factors are:
Also, although Florida is a no-fault state when it comes to divorces, the spouses' fault, or lack thereof, may be assessed or factored into the court's decision when awarding alimony.
Finally, there are various types of alimony that may be awarded depending on the circumstances of your case. The following are types of alimony awarded in Florida:
Payments of alimony are made through depositories which use the State Disbursement Unit (SDU) to relay the money to the payee spouse. This prevents there from having to be any direct contact between the spouses for purposes of payment after their divorce.
Consider speaking with a Florida divorce lawyer if you have questions about Florida spousal support or alimony laws.
Contact a qualified attorney.