Know Your Rights Regarding Spousal Support In Florida

Florida courts have tremendous discretion when determining the amount and the duration of spousal support. The court can grant alimony to either spouse or determine that no alimony is necessary. It is critical to work with an attorney who understands Florida's alimony laws and how to make them work in your favor. At Barry P. Burnette, PA, we bring a wealth of experience and a commitment to protect our clients' rights at every turn.

A spouse seeking alimony must demonstrate a financial need and show the other spouse has the ability to pay. There are different types of spousal support, each serving a different purpose:

  • Temporary alimony is awarded during the divorce proceeding and is automatically terminated when the divorce is final. It can be replaced by one of these other types of support.
  • Rehabilitative alimony is awarded for a short amount of time and is designed to assist the recipient while he or she establishes the ability to become more self-sufficient through job training, education or the redevelopment of previously held skills.
  • Bridge-the-gap alimony also is awarded for a short term and is designed to help the receiving spouse transition from being married to being single.
  • Durational alimony is awarded when other types of alimony do not fill a spouse's need. It is awarded over a period of time that cannot exceed the duration of the marriage.
  • Permanent alimony is awarded to a spouse who lacks the financial ability to meet the needs of life as they were established during the marriage. There are restrictions on when courts can award permanent alimony, and Florida lawmakers have proposed eliminating permanent alimony.

Factors That Impact Alimony

Florida courts consider a number of factors when determining the type of alimony, the amount and the duration it is awarded. These factors include:

  • The length of the marriage
  • The standard of living that was set during the marriage
  • The age and the physical and emotional health of both parties
  • Each party's financial resources and the income-producing ability of assets they receive
  • Whether or not either spouse will require education or training in order to become self-sustaining
  • The contributions each spouse made to the marriage, including homemaking and caring for children

A Strong Advocate In Alimony And Other Issues

The attorney who represents you in divorce will impact the outcome of all of the issues that must be resolved. Few, however, are as important as securing a solid financial foundation, whether you expect to receive alimony, pay it, or you are uncertain whether it will be awarded.

We invite you to meet with an experienced Central Florida divorce lawyer to discuss your situation and learn more about what to expect. Call 352-508-6735 or use our online contact tool to schedule a meeting in our Tavares office.