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Florida's New Alimony Laws (2023): What You Need to Know

Posted by LEISA WINTZ | Mar 24, 2024 | 0 Comments

Earlier this year permanent alimony was removed from Florida Statute 61. In its place we got clarification on awards of Durational Alimony, which is set forth in Florida Statute 61.08(8).

Florida's approach to **spousal support** in divorce cases underwent significant changes with the implementation of the **Alimony Reform Bill** on **July 1, 2023**. Let's delve into the key aspects of these new laws and their potential impact on divorcing couples in the Sunshine State.

1. Elimination of Permanent Alimony **Permanent alimony** was a longstanding concept in Florida law, but it is no longer the norm. Under the new law, permanent alimony is eliminated except in cases of **"exceptional circumstances."** This change aims to provide more predictability and fairness in spousal support arrangements.

2. Durational Limits The Alimony Reform Bill introduces **durational limits** for alimony. Durational alimony is now capped at **35% of the difference between the parties' respective incomes.** However, courts have the flexibility to combine different types of alimony in a single case.

3. Presumptive Guidelines The new law establishes **presumptive guidelines** for determining alimony amounts. These guidelines provide a framework for calculating spousal support based on factors such as income, duration of marriage, and other relevant considerations.

4. No Retroactive Application Importantly, the Alimony Reform Bill does **not apply retroactively** to existing alimony cases. It only affects divorces filed on or after **July 1, 2023**. If you have an ongoing case or file a new case after this date, the new law will apply to your situation.

5. Burden of Proof and Written Findings The party seeking alimony now bears the **burden of proving need** for alimony and the other party's **ability to pay.** Additionally, courts are required to make **written factual findings** regarding the type, amount, and duration of any alimony awarded.

Florida's new alimony laws aim to strike a balance between providing financial support and ensuring fairness. While permanent alimony is no longer the default, divorcing couples can still seek rehabilitative alimony as they transition back into the workforce. If you're navigating a divorce in Florida, understanding these changes is crucial for making informed decisions about spousal support.

Check out these YouTube Videos on Alimony 

About the Author


Leisa Wintz originally began her career as a marriage and family therapist. Ms. Wintz went on to attend law school and started practicing family law in 2009. However, she quickly realized that many family law practices lacked the empathy and compassion she believed were necessary in order to achi...


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