LAW OFFICES OF THOMAS J. DONNELLY
Call For A Consultation
727-474-0153

Florida lawmakers could discuss alimony again this session

A Florida lawmaker has introduced a bill that would end what is known as "permanent alimony" in the state.

Gayle Harrell, a first-term state senator from Stuart, Florida, is sponsoring a bill that would overhaul how alimony is awarded. There is no companion bill in the state House of Representative so far, and her proposal has not been given to a committee for review.

Still, it puts the topic back on the radar in Florida, where lawmakers have wrangled over the past few years with ways to toughen the standards under which alimony is granted. Previous measures have failed, and a renewed effort is likely to spark a new battle.

Typically in Florida, one side argues that paying alimony with no set end date isn't fair to the person paying it. The other side argues that putting a time limit on how long a spouse who left the workforce to care for the family, for example, isn't fair to the recipient who has far less earning power.

In 2016, the sides argued in the halls of the Capitol building about the topic. In 2013, then-Gov. Rick Scott vetoed a bill that would have modified alimony rules and said it changed the "settled economic expectations of many Floridians who have experienced divorce."

The summary of Harrell's proposal states the bill would provide "for the priority of bridge-the-gap alimony, followed by rehabilitative alimony, over any other form; requiring a court to make written findings regarding the basis for awarding a combination of forms of alimony, including the type of alimony and length of time for which it is awarded; providing that the party seeking alimony has the burden of proof of demonstrating a need for alimony and that the other party has the ability to pay alimony, etc."

It isn't a sure thing that this bill ever will make it to debate in the Florida Legislature. Still, family law attorneys and others will be watching to stay abreast of developments.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Email Us For A Response

Contact The Firm

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy

Office Location:

1172 Brownell Street
Clearwater, FL 33756

Phone: 727-474-0153
Fax: 727-461-9504
Clearwater Law Office Map

  • DAV
  • Avvo 10 Superb
  • AV Peer Review