This is one of the big questions that comes up when a couple is going through the divorce process. While there is no definitive answer, since each couple's case will be different, it's important to understand how alimony is decided and what factors are considered. The most common reason for alimony is when one spouse has much less employability than the other, usually because they were a stay-at-home parent or were unemployed for a long time.
Alimony does consider employability and each party's financial advantages or disadvantages, but it is only awarded if one party is deemed to have a need for it and the other party has the ability to pay. Alimony would not leave you with less income than the ex-spouse to whom you are making payments.
When deciding the terms and amount of alimony, many factors are considered, including:
· Duration of marriage
· Standard of living during marriage
· Physical and emotional state of each party
· Each party's assets and liabilities after division
· Sources of income available to each party
· Taxes on potential alimony payments
· Contribution to the marriage, such as housekeeping or childcare
· Each party's responsibility to children
· Education level
· Time needed to receive education/training for employment
If it is determined that you have to pay alimony to your ex-spouse, there are quite a few types of alimony that could be declared. Most types involve payments at set dates for a certain length of time, though the frequency, duration, and amount of payments will all vary from case to case.
Sometimes, though, alimony is paid as a lump sum. This means a single amount is paid in one installment up-front, rather than making payments over a set number of months or years. This has advantages and disadvantages for both sides.
In the past decade, Florida has significantly changed its laws on alimony. If you are considering divorce, it is very important to find a skilled family law attorney who is licensed in Florida and has deep knowledge of the alimony law changes. They can guide you through the process, give advice about important things to consider regarding alimony and assets in a divorce, and help you find the most beneficial outcome for your situation.