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Divorce

ALIMONY – WHEN AND WHY?

In order to obtain alimony, there has got to be a need for assistance on the part of the requesting party and an ability to pay alimony on the part of the other party. Thus, one party may claim that they cannot pay their basic monthly bills without the help of the other.
An alimony determination will factor in the length of the marriage. There is a rebuttable presumption that a short-term marriage is a marriage having a duration of less than 7 years, a moderate-term marriage is a marriage having a duration of greater than 7 years but less than 17 years, and long-term marriage is a marriage having a duration of 17 years or greater.


Permanent alimony is for long-duration marriages if the statutory criteria are met, or for moderate duration marriages if appropriate based on clear and convincing evidence after consideration of statutory factors, It is also for short duration marriage upon written findings of exceptional circumstances. In the award of permanent alimony the court must make findings that no other form of alimony is fair and reasonable.
Bridge the gap alimony is where there are identifiable short term needs and it is not to exceed two years. Durational alimony is for a set period of time. It is for short or moderate duration marriages, or long-duration marriages if there is no ongoing need for support on a permanent basis. Durational alimony can be modified upon a substantial change of circumstances pursuant to Florida Statute, although the length of the award cannot be modified, except under exceptional circumstances, and cannot exceed the length of marriage. Bridge the gap alimony is not modifiable as to amount or duration. Rehabilitative Alimony can be modified upon a substantial change of circumstances pursuant to Florida Statute, or upon non compliance with the rehabilitative plan, or completion of the plan. Permanent alimony may be modified based upon a substantial change of circumstances.

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