How is alimony or spousal support determined in Florida?

In Florida alimony or spousal support is determined by a myriad of factors. Though alimony was once associated with women, both men and women are eligible for spousal support. In colloquial use, “palimony” refers to alimony paid to men. Practically speaking, though, there’s no legal difference between alimony for men and women; courts refer to both as spousal support.

Alimony is not automatic. Indeed, it’s increasingly harder to get. Courts will take into account myriad factors when determining whether you’re eligible for alimony. Those factors include:

  • Your spouse’s income and ability to pay.
  • Your income and assets, as well as your future earning power.
  • Your role in the marriage. For instance, did you give up a lucrative career to raise kids, or work full-time while your spouse attended law school?
  • The length of your marriage. Short marriages are unlikely to result in alimony awards, especially not large awards.
  • Whether you and your spouse have an express or implied agreement to share property, divvy up your labor, or support one another as you pursue career or family goals.

Ultimately, it will come down to a question of whether you provided something valuable to the marriage and your spouse can afford to compensate you for that. 

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