Moving Your Family Forward
How much can I get or how much do I have to pay?
You always hope the Judge renders a fair and just award of alimony but his decision can be only based on the evidence presented through your attorney.
In determining who you choose for your attorney in this most critical phase of your divorce, you should consider your attorney's background. Whether or not he has an accounting background or a business background and also the time he has spent involved in forensic accounting.
The Pensacola, Florida alimony lawyers at the Law Firm of Steven W. Bowden have extensive experience and education including business, accounting, forensic accounting and economics. All of these tools make our firm uniquely able to delve through financial accounts, bank statements and credit card statements in order to present a true financial picture to the Judge for the determination of alimony. If you need alimony, this is critical. If you are paying alimony or the request has been made to pay alimony, it is critical for your attorney to understand your ability to pay and the recipient of the alimony's true needs.
What makes us different?
- We can spread credit cards and expenses to determine the true needs of the party who is requesting alimony.
- We can review the overall financial picture or through the use of third party production, force the person from whom you wish to receive alimony to produce a true financial picture.
- We can take into consideration all of the income available to the person who is paying the alimony. Example being: bonuses; like payments such as–does his company provide a vehicle, health insurance, reimbursement for overnight stays or entertainment?
- We use third party production to achieve an equitable balance in regarding retirement. In determining how much retirement he/she is really going to get paid or what his/her current income is and how that income will change when and if he/she retires.
Length of Marriage
What the Judge considers in determining how much alimony is paid has changed!
if you think you might have to pay alimony then the length of the marriage may be a large factor in determining how long you may have to pay. The length of the marriage is calculated from the date of marriage to the date the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage is filed, not the date of separation. If you are separated but have not filed for divorce, the longer you wait puts you at a greater risk of paying more years of alimony or perhaps permanent alimony.
If the length of marriage is: less than 7 years it is generally considered short term; more than 7 but less than 17 it is a moderate term marriage and more than 17 it is a long term marriage as measured from the date of marriage to the filing of the dissolution petition.
A long term marriage would be over 17 years in which case you may have to pay or receive if you requested permanent alimony until the receiving spouse dies; remarries or a substantial change occurs that would require in fairness for the payor to pay less.
What can make you pay less?
- Loss of job
- The receiving spouse no longer needs all the alimony you are paying
- Co-habitation as set forth in the marital settlement agreement or pursuant to Florida Statute 61.14
Relative income of the parties
Generally speaking, the Courts will balance one party's needs over the other party's ability to pay. If a party does not have the ability to pay minimal monthly expenses, and the other party has a good income, so long as other factors are satisfied, it's likely that alimony will be awarded.
Future financial prospects of the parties
A spouse who is going to realize significant income in the future is likely to have to pay higher alimony than one who is not.
Health of the parties
Poor health goes towards need, and potentially an inability to support oneself. The Courts do not want to leave one party indigent and therefore require the other party to pay.
Durational Alimony is new to Florida and is awarded when permanent alimony is not awarded.Like permanent alimony it may be modified or terminated based on a change of circumstances but only in exceptional circumstances. It is most important to note that durational alimony cannot exceed the length of the marriage.
Rehabilitative alimony can only be awarded for a period of time to enable the receiving party to:
- Redevelop previous skills or credentials
- Obtain education or appropriate employment skills
To receive Rehab Alimony we will help you develop a specific and defined rehabilitative plan that if approved by the court will be placed in the Final Order of Divorce along with specific findings of facts.
Call us now for a FREE Consultation(850) 898-9850