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Florida residents could see changes to alimony laws

Florida laws regarding spousal support have been an issue of much debate. A recent bill drafted in an effort to make changes to the current alimony laws was vetoed just hours before it was set to pass. The governor’s concern for citizens that have already entered into divorce settlements was cited as the reason for the veto. Despite the bill’s failure, residents could see changes as early as next year.

There are currently four types of alimony that can be awarded during a divorce proceeding in the state of Florida. One highly contested form of spousal support is permanent alimony. Critics of the current laws argue that people often spend more money in support payments than they spend on their current family. In many cases, these payments also result in financial hardships and may delay a person’s ability to retire.

Although there are many sides to the debate, interestingly, many women are in favor of the reforms. The gender wage gaps in several of the state’s counties are among the lowest for metro areas in the United States. With many women now out-earning their husbands, their support for modernizing the current laws may have a significant impact.

A new bill regarding alimony laws in Florida is expected to be introduced sometime this year. Until then, judicial discretion will still determine spousal support payments for divorcing couples. It is critical for both spouses to understand their financial situation and their rights under current laws. Divorce can be a long and complicated process. Seeking the proper information and assistance available may improve one’s chances of receiving a favorable settlement in their case.

Source: digitaljournal.com, Could alimony law changes still lie ahead for divorcing Floridians?, No author, Jan. 23, 2014

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