Alimony, sometimes referred to as spousal support, is when one spouse has to pay money to the other spouse following a separation or divorce. Either party, the husband or the wife, can ask the court to order that alimony be paid to him or her and a Judge has broad discretion when deciding whether or not to order someone to pay alimony to his or her spouse and in the amount to be paid. The judge will first consider whether or not the person asking for alimony has a financial need for it and if the other party has the ability to pay alimony to the party with a need. Determinations for finding that alimony should or should not be paid are very fact specific and an individual looking to receive alimony or limit his or her potential alimony obligation is advised to consult with an experienced Melbourne divorce attorney.
Florida law allows a Judge to decide between four types of alimony:
- Bridge the Gap Alimony cannot exceed two years and is designed to help one spouse transition from being married to being single.
- Rehabilitative Alimony is designed to help one party become self sufficient by providing money to a spouse while he or she gets the education, training or work experience he or she needs in order to support himself or herself.
- Durational Alimony provides a spouse with economic assistance for a set period of time and can not exceed the length of the marriage.
- Permanent Alimony provides payment to a husband or a wife until either party dies or until the party receiving alimony remarries.
A Judge considers a variety of factors in deciding which type of alimony to award to a party, including, but not limited to: the parties’ standard of living, the duration of a marriage, the age and health of the parties, financial resources, earning capacities, contributions to a marriage, children, and tax consequences.
If you need help from a Brevard County, Florida Family Law Attorney regarding an alimony matter or any other family law matter, contact us today: