Written by Whitney R. Lonker, Wood, Atter & Wolf, P.A.
Florida law provides for permanent alimony when certain statutory factors are met however, in the end, it’s still up to a Judge. Having said that, the length of the marriage is one factor the Courts look to in determining permanent alimony. Usually if the marriage is 10 years or fewer, the courts consider this a short-term marriage and there is a presumption against permanent alimony. If the marriage is 11-16 years, the courts deem this as a “gray area” length of marriage with no presumption either way for or against alimony. A marriage of 17 or more years is considered by the courts to be long-term with a presumption in favor of permanent alimony. However, the requesting spouse has to show a need for the support and the other spouse has to show an ability to pay it. On July 29, 2009, the Florida 3rd DCA stated that there is a strong factor support permanent alimony where a spouse remained home caring for the family rather than purusing a career for a significant period of time. If you need help with a dissolution, alimony, child support, child custody, relocation or equitable distribution issue, please call our firm at 904-355-8888.