For those of you that are in the midst of a divorce or for those of you that are contemplating divorce, the topic of alimony has almost certainly weighed heavily on your mind. Two key questions; Will I get alimony or will I have to pay alimony? The requirements for alimony, in their simplest form are whether a party has the need for alimony contrasted with the other party’s ability to pay. This analysis is getting rather complex in modern society and the legislature in Tallahassee has been actively working on new legislation to resolve a good portion of the ambiguity and uncertainty that can arise when trying to determine if alimony is appropriate and if so, what amount of alimony is proper.
So often society paints the portrait of the affluent spouse joining his/her partner from modest means and that partner being entitled to significant sums of alimony should the parties dissolve their marriage. As stated above the analysis, in its simplest form, has little complexity. Does the modest means partner have the need for alimony? If so, does the affluent spouse have the ability to pay? If only this analysis were that simple. The full and complete evaluation of this issue often becomes very complex. Florida law permits a number of objective and subjective factors that the Court must consider in determining an alimony award. Frequently, this evaluation relies on expert testimony from vocational experts to properly determine what each party’s earning capacity is, expert testimony from financial experts to determine the actual need of the requesting party and the ability of the other party to contribute to that need and a full and complete evaluation of other factors that the Court must consider.
Trying to navigate these issues and factors on your own is not in your best interest. There are so many possibilities in a proper determination of alimony that you should seek the advice of an experienced family law attorney. At Schwam-Wilcox & Associates, we can assist you with the task of evaluating the complex determination of alimony process not only for the amount sought to be received or paid, but the length of time for the alimony to be paid.
For more information on alimony and divorce issues please contact the law firm of Schwam-Wilcox & Associates.