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    Understanding Alimony Law in Pensacola, Florida

    In Pensacola, FL, as well as the rest of the state, alimony payments are typically determined by the court and are based on very specific laws. If you pay or have pending alimony obligations, here’s a brief and concise summary of what you may anticipate.

    What is Alimony?

    In short, alimony is a type of court­ordered support payment for a spouse. The court can stipulate alimony payments be made while a divorce case is ongoing, as well as ordering support be paid for a predetermined period after the divorce is finalized. However, not all alimony is the same.

    Different Types of Alimony in Pensacola, FL

    Alimony in Florida typically falls into one of five categories. These include:

    • Permanent: Spousal support that endures either until the court intervenes, a spouse remarries, or a spouse dies.
    • Temporary: Spousal support that begins when the divorce petition is filed. This type of alimony is usually requested upfront and can be modified by the court at a later time. In many Florida cases, temporary alimony ceases when the divorce case ends.
    • Durational: Durational spousal support is a sort of ‘catch­all’ type of alimony when the court cannot qualify other categories. This type of alimony is true to it’s name; support payments only last as long as the marriage did.
    • Rehabilitative: This type of alimony is designed to support a spouse’s ability to acquire skills that can increase their earning potential, or their ability to secure employment. Rehabilitative alimony can be targeted toward educational pursuits, such as college, or vocational training. Typically, there is a stipulated plan and strict timeline that the recipient must adhere to for the support payments to continue. After completing their education or job training, the support can be discontinued.
    • Bridge­the­gap: This type of spousal support gives the recipient a brief period of time to receive alimony payments. In Florida, two years is the typical amount of time. This helps the spouse ‘bridge­the­gap’ while making different accommodations and arrangements after a divorce.

    Who Receives Alimony?

    When you think of alimony, the traditional thought process is to assume the wife will receive it. However, Florida alimony law – while not completely gender blind – favors the lower­wage earner. So, if the wife was the higher earning spouse, alimony payments could be awarded to the husband. Courts also factor in other considerations, such as how long the marriage endured, the health of the spouses, children and any other issues that could affect life quality and survival. Legal decisions regarding alimony are extremely diverse and unpredictable. It really depends on the individual court and judge.

    Pensacola Divorce Attorney