Fort Lauderdale Alimony Lawyer
Divorce often ends with one of the spouses earning substantially less than the other spouse, especially in situations where one of the parties was a homemaker or a stay-at-home parent. In scenarios where one party needs additional income in order to obtain education, professional training, or other experience in order to be able to support himself or herself, the court may award alimony. While many people think of alimony as a payment for fault in a marriage, under Florida law, alimony is actually designed to provide the party seeking the support to have a sufficient income for a particular period of time after a divorce. If you have questions about alimony in Florida, a Fort Lauderdale alimony lawyer at our firm can help.
How Does Alimony Work in Fort Lauderdale?
According to Florida law, “in a proceeding for the dissolution of marriage, the court may grant alimony to either party, which alimony may be bridge-the-gap, rehabilitative, durational, or permanent in nature or any combination of these forms of alimony.” Alimony can then be paid either in periodic payments (typically monthly) or in a lump sum. In some cases, alimony can be paid as both a lump sum and in periodic payments.
Determining Whether Alimony is Appropriate in Fort Lauderdale
When one of the spouses in a divorce case requests alimony, the first step the court takes is to determine whether alimony is appropriate. In order to determine whether alimony is appropriate, “the court shall first make a specific factual determination as to whether either party has an actual need for alimony or maintenance and whether either party has the ability to pay alimony or maintenance.” To be clear, when a court awards alimony, it does so on a need-based basis.
Once a court decides alimony is appropriate, then it will use a wide variety of statutory factors to determine the appropriate amount and duration of alimony. Those factors may include, for example:
- Standard of living during the marriage;
- Duration of the marriage;
- Age and physical and emotional condition of each party;
- Financial resources of each party;
- Earning capacities of each party;
- Amount of time necessary for the party seeking alimony to obtain training, education, or other skills to find appropriate employment;
- Contribution of each party to the marriage, including both childcare and homemaking contributions;
- Responsibilities of each party to caring for minor children from the marriage;
- Tax consequences of alimony to both parties; and
- Each party’s sources of income.
Courts can also use any additional factors that are “necessary to do equity and justice between the parties.”
Seek Advice from a Fort Lauderdale Alimony Attorney
Do you need assistance seeking alimony or handling a petition for alimony from your spouse? One of the experienced Fort Lauderdale alimony attorneys at our firm can assist you. We are committed to providing representation to clients in many different matters arising out of Florida divorce cases, and we know alimony can be a complication but important issue in many divorces.Contact The Law Offices of Caroline Olson, P.A. for more information about how we can help with your alimony case.