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Florida lawmakers decline to seek alimony reform this session

Finances and a person’s rights in family court are important concepts when the person decides to file for divorce. Stories about celebrity divorces seem to focus a great deal on the money. Property division is only one aspect of the finances that may be important in an individual divorce. Day-to-day expenses during, and after, the divorce may be of great concern for many people.

Florida law provides a framework for how spousal support may be addressed in a divorce. Generally, a person must show the need for alimony, which may be ordered on a more permanent basis, or for a shorter period of time. The need for alimony is only one aspect that the court considers; the court will also consider the affordability of alimony for the spouse who would be obligated to pay under a court order.

Last year, Gov. Rick Scott vetoed a measure that sought to reform to spousal support laws in the state. That bill sought to eliminate permanent alimony under Florida’s divorce laws. Other changes to the law were included in the bill. Lawmakers in Tallahassee, Florida, who sponsored the bill last year have announced that they will not be seeking to revive interest in alimony reform in the session that began earlier this month.

Alimony may not be the only issue in a divorce. Property division issues in Florida, like spousal support decisions, may be worked out through a negotiated settlement or in mediation. In some cases, litigation may be necessary to resolve all of the issues. A family law attorney can work with a person who is going through divorce in seeking a fair settlement under Florida law.

Source: The Ledger, &ldquo No alimony reform in 2014,” Lloyd Dunkelberger, March 8, 2014

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