Everything You Need to Know About Types of Alimony in Florida

In Florida, alimony refers to the financial support provided to a spouse during and/or after a divorce or separation. Florida law recognizes several types of alimony, each with its own purpose and guidelines. Here are the types of alimony recognized in Florida:

1. Bridge-the-Gap Alimony

Bridge-the-gap alimony is awarded to help a spouse transition from being married to being single. It is intended to assist with short-term financial needs, such as housing, utilities, and basic living expenses. Bridge-the-gap alimony cannot exceed two years and terminates upon the death of either party or the remarriage of the recipient spouse.

2. Rehabilitative Alimony

Rehabilitative alimony is awarded to support a spouse in obtaining education, training, or skills necessary to become self-supporting and financially independent. The recipient spouse must have a specific plan outlining the steps they will take to achieve self-support. Rehabilitative alimony is typically awarded for a specific period, and its termination may be subject to the completion of the agreed-upon rehabilitation plan.

3. Durational Alimony

Durational alimony is awarded when permanent periodic alimony is not appropriate but the receiving spouse still needs financial assistance for a set period. The duration of the alimony is typically based on the length of the marriage. However, the duration cannot exceed the length of the marriage, except in exceptional circumstances. Durational alimony terminates upon the death of either party or upon the remarriage of the receiving spouse.

4. Permanent Periodic Alimony

Permanent periodic alimony is awarded to provide ongoing financial support to a spouse who lacks the ability to become self-supporting at a standard of living similar to the one enjoyed during the marriage. It is typically awarded in long-term marriages or in cases where the recipient spouse has a significant financial need. Permanent periodic alimony continues until the death of either party or until the receiving spouse remarries.

5. Temporary Alimony

Temporary alimony, also known as pendente lite alimony, is awarded during the pendency of the divorce proceedings. Its purpose is to provide temporary financial support to the receiving spouse until a final alimony determination is made. The amount and duration of temporary alimony are typically determined based on the financial needs of the receiving spouse and the paying spouse’s ability to provide support.

It’s important to note that the specific type and amount of alimony awarded in a divorce case in Florida depend on various factors, including the length of the marriage, the financial circumstances of both spouses, their earning capacities, and any relevant contributions made by either spouse. The court evaluates these factors on a case-by-case basis to determine a fair and equitable alimony arrangement. Consulting with a family law attorney is recommended to understand the specific guidelines and considerations relevant to your situation.