Paul J. Phipps, Esquire
Divorce - Alimony in Florida "The Basics"
Updated: Mar 24, 2020
Alimony in Florida is governed by Florida Statute 61.08. The goal of alimony is to provide financial support in cases where one spouse is in a significantly stronger financial position than the other. Alimony law is complicated and there are a multitude of factors the Court will consider when determining if it will grant an alimony claim.
The basic analysis applied in Florida alimony cases is the determination of need and ability. The court will first determine if the requesting spouse has a need for financial support. If the court determines that the requesting spouse has a need for financial support, the court shifts its focus to determine if the other spouse has the ability to pay the requested financial support.
If the court determines there is a need for financial support and there is an ability to pay financial support, the court moves to the next step which is to determine the type, the term, and the amount of alimony. The court will consider all relevant factors to make this determination including but not limited to the following factors provided in Florida Statute 61.08(2)(a-j).
(a) The standard of living established during the marriage.
(b) The duration of the marriage.
(c) The age and the physical and emotional condition of each party.
(d) The financial resources of each party, including the nonmarital and the marital assets and liabilities distributed to each.
(e) The earning capacities, educational levels, vocational skills, and employability of the parties and, when applicable, the time necessary for either party to acquire sufficient education or training to enable such party to find appropriate employment.
(f) The contribution of each party to the marriage, including, but not limited to, services rendered in homemaking, child care, education, and career building of the other party.
(g) The responsibilities each party will have with regard to any minor children they have in common.
(h) The tax treatment and consequences to both parties of any alimony award, including the designation of all or a portion of the payment as a nontaxable, nondeductible payment.
(i) All sources of income available to either party, including income available to either party through investments of any asset held by that party
(j) Any other factor necessary to do equity and justice between the parties.
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