As stories continue to circulate of the myriad consequences of oversharing in the increasingly connected world of social media, it would be wise for Florida spouses to take care when logging in. The information put out on sites such as Facebook possibly could strain a marriage, or even provide ammunition for one spouse to use against another during a divorce.
When a family breaks apart, the financial changes can be devastating for spouses who were dependent on the other. In Orlando, some people may choose to stay at home and raise the children while others may have not attained the education and career status as their spouse. Still other spouses may be unable to work due to age or health issues. For people in this situation, the court may decide to grant them alimony payments.
Florida law allows those who have been ordered to pay alimony to petition the state for spousal support modification or even termination of alimony when their former spouses move in with other people, as long as it can be proven that their exes have entered into “supportive relationships.” The 2015 Florida Statutes provides that a supportive relationship may be alleged to exist when former spouses reside with people to whom they are not related by blood or marriage. The statute defines certain circumstances the courts will use to determine the nature of the relationship when considering modifying or ending alimony.
In Florida, your divorce may end with an order for alimony to your spouse. This order is usually based upon some qualifying factors, such as the length of time you were married, what you and your spouse contributed to the marriage and the lifestyle you maintained together. This order remains in effect unless and until either you or your ex ask for it to be modified.
Whether or not you will be required to pay your former spouse alimony in Florida depends on many factors unique to your situation. Because alimony is not a legal right that the courts give to everyone, your spouse will first have to request that the courts grant them that right during your case. This usually happens when his or her attorney files the complaint for divorce, or an amended complaint at some time during the action.
Although Florida State legislators allowed a recent alimony reform bill to expire this April, changes to the law may still be coming. The Florida Senate website shows that a sponsoring senator recently filed a new bill, Senate Bill 250, which aims to make many of the same reforms to alimony law as the previous bill
According to the Cornell University Law School’s Legal Information Institute, alimony payments are a form of monetary support. Alimony may be required when spouses cannot financially support themselves. Alimony payments are not, however, set in stone. As explained by the Florida Courts, alimony obligations may be modified in certain cases.
We’ve been discussing in our last posts the topic of alimony, particularly permanent alimony and an ongoing attempt in Florida to do away with these awards. We left off last time discussing changes a current proposal would make to alimony awards in Florida and the arguments for and against these changes.
In our last post, we began discussing some of the particulars of state law as it pertains to alimony awards, particularly permanent alimony. As we noted, awards of permanent alimony are not common, but they can and do occur. Some Florida lawmakers are seeking to change that with a bill that would get rid of permanent alimony in Florida.
Spousal support, as readers may know, can be a contentious issue in divorce just as property division, child custody, and other issues can be. For spouses who are not ending their marriage on amicable terms—and many do not—having to pay for their former partner’s maintenance can be a frustrating thing to do, especially if the alimony award is significant.