What are the alimony options in Florida?

When a couple in Florida has decided that it is time to dissolve their marriage, there are a number of factors that must be taken into consideration. One of these factors is alimony, which requires one spouse to financially support the other spouse after the divorce has been finalized for a certain period of time. There are four different types of alimony that may be applicable depending on some of the circumstances surrounding the spouses. The factors that are investigated when considering whether alimony is the correct choice for a couple may include the length of the marriage, the ability of each spouse to work, the standard of living prior to the divorce, the age of the spouses, and more.

In some situations, the court may feel it is beneficial to award permanent alimony. However, there may also be situations where “bridge the gap” alimony is ordered, simply to allow the less monied spouse time to transition into single life. There may be situations in which a spouse put their career or education on hold during the marriage to raise a family and therefore, will not be able to financially support themselves after the divorce. This situation may result in an award of rehabilitative alimony. This will allow the less-monied spouse to work towards establishing a level of financial self-sufficiency in the future.

The breakdown of the length of a marriage is as follows. Short-term marriages are those that last less than 7 years. Moderate-term marriage are those that last anywhere from 7 years to 17 years. Finally, long-term marriages are those that have lasted for upwards of 17 years. The length of the marriage is one of the most important factors when determining what type of alimony can be awarded. Permanent alimony will likely only be awarded to marriages that are considered long-term.

If you have questions about what type of alimony may be best for you following your divorce, speak with an experienced divorce mediator who can assist you.

Judith Goldberg is an experienced Boca Raton mediator serving Palm Beach and Broward County, Florida. If you need a compassionate mediator to guide you through your family law matter, contact our Boca Raton office for a free consultation.