When you're working through your equitable distribution one factor that may come up is the possibility for alimony. To obtain alimony, a spouse has to show that he or she needs the alimony to support his or her lifestyle as it is presently. Alimony may also be used as a type of reimbursement for a person who has missed time in the workforce or who needs support while going back to school.
When the court looks at alimony, there are several factors to consider. Three different lengths of time, short, medium and long, define marriages of up to 7, 7 to 17 and 17 or more years. The length of time of marriage has existed does have an impact on the amount of alimony that will be awarded.
One common type of alimony is called bridge-the-gap alimony. It's intended to help a spouse transition from being married to being single. It is a short-term award. Another type is called durational alimony. This kind of alimony provides a spouse with economic assistance for a set time frame. It is not permanent.
Rehabilitative alimony can be awarded for spouses who wish to go back to school for the redevelopment of previous skills or credentials with the final aim of being able to be self-sufficient. To obtain this particular kind of alimony, the court spells out a specific rehabilitative plan so that the parties understand what's expected and when the alimony ends.
Finally, there is permanent alimony. It is not common, but it is awarded to those who lack the financial ability to meet the needs of everyday life following the end of a marriage. The court will look into different factors like the length of your marriage, your physical and emotional condition and the time needed to acquire sufficient education. If you would like permanent alimony, you should work with your Sarasota attorney to provide evidence of why you deserve long-term financial support.
Source: The Florida Bar, "Alimony," accessed Oct. 21, 2016