Spousal support is a necessary protection, especially for spouses who have not been working or who rely on their other spouse for support. The reality is that it would be extremely unfair to divorce and leave one person with little to nothing. It would be damaging to leave them without at least some support while they find a way to cover their expenses.
One way that the courts encourage spouses to be fair with one another is with spousal support. Spousal support is designed to protect a nonworking or lesser-earning spouse by giving them a kind of safety net. The higher-earning spouse pays a weekly, biweekly, monthly, annual or a lump-sum settlement to the other, depending on the arrangement.
How long will spousal support last?
In most situations, spousal support is temporary. Spousal support is designed to help people get back on their feet or to make up the difference between earnings, so they can live a similar lifestyle. However, in some instances, it may be long-term, such as when two elderly people divorce or when one spouse is unable to find sustainable work in the future due to living with a disability or other issue.
In the past, Florida has seen legislation that would do away with permanent alimony, but it is still possible to get it today if the circumstances are right. Support is, and should be, based on the spouse’s need and the other’s ability to pay.
If you’re in a position where you need spousal support to help you after divorce, don’t be afraid to seek it out. Our website has more information on how it can help you and what to expect if you do decide to ask for it.