West Palm Beach Divorce Lawyer Matthew S. Nugent observed the following case from Florida’s Second District Court of Appeal:

Case:               Valente v. Barion

Court:             Second District Court of Appeal.

Trial Judge:   Marc B. Gilner.

Attorneys:      Cynthia L. Greene of Greene Smith & Associates, Marcia J. Lockwood.

Issues:             Alimony, Attorney’s Fees.

Holding:          Florida statute enables a trial court to award durational or permanent alimony on the dissolution of moderate term marriages. A marriage of twelve (12) years is considered a moderate term marriage. In ordering permanent alimony, the trial court must make specific factual determinations from the parties’ evidence regarding the actual need of the former spouse considering the factors set out in statute. In this case, the trial court erred in awarding the former wife permanent alimony in a twelve-year marriage and in denying her request for attorney’s fees and retroactive alimony. The trial court’s decision considered the respective health and employment status of the parties but improperly applied evidence that the former wife’s health and employment status were likely to improve in the two years following the entry of the judgment. The trial court’s decision on attorney’s fees and retroactive alimony was based on its award of permanent alimony. The matters were remanded on the issue of type and amount of alimony as well as attorney’s fees.

Matthew S. Nugent is a West Palm Beach Divorce Attorney with the law firm of Nugent Zborowski & Bruce. Mr. Nugent’s law practice is limited to the mediation, litigation and appeals of divorce and family law matters. His practice is throughout South Florida, including Palm Beach Gardens, Boca Raton, West Palm Beach, and other areas throughout Palm Beach County, Martin County and Broward County. To speak with Mr. Nugent, or another member of the firm, call (561) 844-1200