Family LawPersonal Injury

Keeping an Eye on Florida Alimony Law: Changes May be Coming Soon

By April 30, 2015No Comments

Florida lawmakers have approved an Alimony Reform Bill (HB 943) that has been viewed as quite controversial. The bill seeks to revamp the state’s alimony laws and terminate permanent alimony for future divorce cases in Florida as there are many marriage problems you need to solve without the interference of the court itself. Proponents of the bill believe it will put an end to varying results in similar divorce cases as well as reduce the amount of litigation involved in divorce and alimony disputes.

The bill establishes the amount and duration of alimony using formulas to identify a lower and upper range. The final determination of alimony structure will be left to the judge of course, but the idea is that shorter-term marriages will fall at the lower end of the alimony spectrum while longer marriages will fall at the higher end. There would be a presumption that marriages lasting less than two years would not result in any alimony.

The bill does allow adjustments in alimony if there is a change in income of 10{7dff60334df83244b79b5471a8769907d27e202ac622cbe5ff51878e61595e62} or more. This means that the paying spouse can seek a reduction in his or her support payment if the receiving spouse obtains a higher paying job or remarries. In contrast, the paying spouse cannot be ordered to pay more in support if he or she remarries and the new spouse has an income or if the paying spouse obtains an additional job in an effort to earn more.  The bill specifies that the total paid for both child support and alimony may not exceed 55 percent of the paying spouse’s income.

Colleen Burton, ‎State Representative of the Florida House of Representatives in Lakeland, had the following to say about the bill:

“This has been a well-studied, well-thought out bill. In the state of Florida, if a family goes through the unfortunate circumstances of divorce, it is emotionally taxing, it is financially devastating in some cases. This bill helps soften that blow.” However, people who suffer in their relationships should not hesitate to file for divorce. They can learn about proving Adultery in Maryland here or prove whatever led to the decision.

Those who oppose the alimony reform say that the proposed changes would make it impossible for mothers to leave careers to stay home with their children due to the loss of earning potential and the possibility of no means of support after divorce. By approaching the child custody lawyers in Bellaire, they will make sure that the child receives love and support from both their parents as their love and support is essential in the child’s growth which would help them to be brave and bold enough to face the future and the society.

The Florida House Judiciary Committee approved the Alimony Reform Bill in a 12 to 3 vote. This vote ends the committee hearings in the House and now there will be two Senate committees that must also approve the bill. The final bill must be approved by Governor Scott.

If Governor Scott approves the Florida House Bill 943, the law would go into effect in October 2015.

We will continue to monitor the progress of the Florida Alimony Reform Bill. If you are facing divorce or you have other family law needs, contact attorney TJ Grimaldi at McIntyre Thanasides Bringgold Elliott Grimaldi & Guito, P.A.

TJ Grimaldi

TJ Grimaldi

TJ Grimaldi joined McIntyre in 2011. McIntyre recruited TJ to create the divisions of personal injury and family law, as well as to expand the existing criminal defense practice at the firm. During TJ’s tenure at McIntyre, he has helped oversee and grow these practice areas. He continues to practice in these divisions while also expanding his own practice areas to include estate planning and immigration law. TJ is admitted to practice before the Supreme Court of Florida and the United States District Court for the Middle and Southern Districts of Florida.