June 22, 2016

What are the Different Types of Alimony in Florida?

What are the Different Types of Alimony in Florida?

What is alimony? There are six different types of alimony in Florida, determined by various conditions within the marriage. Learn about each kind and what it provides divorced parties.

Permanent Alimony

What is it?

  • Permanent alimony allows a spouse who has not worked (or has lower income or lower earning potential) and has a need for alimony to continue to live in the same standard of living as enjoyed during the marriage.

When is it awarded?

  • Permanent alimony is more likely to be awarded in a long term marriage (defined as a marriage greater than 17 years in length)
  • Permanent alimony can be awarded in medium length marriages (defined as marriages of 7 years but less than 17 years). In medium length marriages, the longer the length of the marriage and the greater the disparity of income are some of the factors the court considers in determining whether permanent alimony is awarded. Also, the party seeking alimony must prove his or her need for alimony by clear and convincing evidence.
  • Permanent alimony is awarded in short term marriages (defined as a marriage of less than 7 years) only in rare situations when one spouse has been seriously injured or come down with a medical condition that does not allow them to support themselves.

What must be shown?

  • There must be a showing by the party seeking permanent alimony that the other party has the ability to pay the alimony amount requested.

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Rehabilitative alimony

What is it?

  • Rehabilitative alimony may be awarded to assist a party in establishing the capacity for self-support through either:
    • the redevelopment of previous skills or credentials or
    • the acquisition of education, training, or work experience necessary to develop appropriate employment skills or credentials. 
  • Often the rehabilitative alimony claim is made by a party who has given up their education or job to raise children and now needs support so they can finish or reestablish themselves in the workforce with education and/or training.

When is it awarded?

  • Rehabilitative alimony is typically awarded more in medium length marriages and short-term marriages.

What must be shown?:

  • The party who is seeking rehabilitative alimony has to show the court a specific and defined plan of rehabilitation (such as attendance at college or vocational training).

 

Durational alimony

What is it?

  • The purpose of durational alimony is to provide a party with economic assistance for a set period of time following a marriage of short or moderate duration. It offers a solution in between permanent and rehabilitative alimony.

What must be shown?

  • The party seeking durational alimony does not have to present a rehabilitative plan but must show that he or she has a need for alimony.

 

Bridge-the-gap alimony

What is it?

  • Bridge-the-gap alimony is short-term alimony that cannot exceed 2 years in length.
  • Bridge-the-gap alimony can be awarded to a party to allow them to ease the financial transition from married to single life.

 

Temporary alimony

What is it?

  • Temporary alimony can be awarded to a party to cover their needs from the time that the dissolution of marriage action is filed through the entry of the Final Judgment of Dissolution of Marriage.

 

Lump sum alimony

What is it?

  • In some circumstances, lump sum alimony can be used as a means of support and other times can be used to equalize the asset distribution (i.e one party may be awarded a business and the other party is awarded lump sum alimony as an offset).

 

 

Board Certified Marital and Family Law Attorney Charles D. Jamieson understands that divorce is an extremely sensitive and important issue. Thanks to extensive experience and a focus on open communication, Attorney Jamieson adeptly addresses the complex issues surrounding divorce while delivering excellent personal service. To discuss alimony, please contact The Law Firm of Charles D. Jamieson, P.A. online or call 561-478-0312.

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