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Factors Determining Alimony In Florida


Many divorcing spouses wonder whether or not they will have to pay alimony or will receive alimony to help them financially after their divorce. Alimony is a complex topic. There’s more than one type of alimony and the courts decide whether or not alimony will be awarded based on numerous factors. Add to that the recent changes in Florida law concerning permanent alimony, and you have a lot of information to process. In this article, the Orlando family lawyers at Greater Orlando Family Law will discuss which factors the court considers when awarding alimony to a spouse.

Factors determining alimony in a Florida divorce 

The court will consider several factors when determining the type of alimony a spouse will receive and the duration and amount of that alimony. Some of these include:

  • The standard of living each spouse enjoyed during the marriage – The court will consider the recipient spouse’s standard of living during the marriage. It is generally presumed that during a long-term marriage, the spouse should enjoy the same standard of living they did during the marriage.
  • How long the marriage lasted – Durational alimony can never exceed 50% of a short-term marriage (less than ten years but more than three); 60% of a moderate-term marriage (more than 10 years but less than 20); or 75% of a long-term marriage (more than 20 years). Alimony cannot be awarded in a marriage that lasted less than 3 years.
  • Physical or mental limitations of the spouse – The courts will consider whether or not the spouse can work given their physical and mental health. If they cannot, the courts will take that into consideration when deciding alimony.
  • The earning capacity and income of both spouses – The courts will consider the relative earning capacity of both spouses. Alimony payments can never exceed 35% of the differences in income between the spouses. If one spouse makes considerably more, then that spouse is likely to pay the other alimony.
  • If the spouse will require educational or vocational training – If one spouse suspends their career to take care of the house and the children, then the courts may award that spouse rehabilitative alimony to pursue career prospects and become self-sufficient.
  • What contributions each spouse made to the marriage – The courts will consider factors like financial contributions, homemaking, child care, support of one spouse for obtaining an education, and other factors.

The factors considered by the court will determine the type of alimony one spouse pays to the other. Usually, when people think about alimony, they are thinking of durational alimony which is a monthly payment paid for a set period of time to support the other spouse. However, there are other types of alimony such as rehabilitative alimony, temporary alimony, or bridge-the-gap alimony which are meant to help a spouse toward some goal or for a short period of time. Our Orlando alimony lawyers can help you understand what sorts of alimony you should be advocating for given the conditions of your marriage.

Talk to an Orlando Divorce Attorney Today 

Greater Orlando Family Law represents the interests of Orlando residents who are seeking alimony pursuant to their divorce. Call our office today to schedule an appointment, and we’ll be more than happy to answer any questions you may have.

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