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What should I know about alimony orders in Florida?

For people who are going through a divorce in Florida, the question of alimony might come up at some point. There are some very specific points about alimony that might interest some of our readers. These points can determine if alimony is suitable for a case and what the terms of the alimony should be.

How is alimony determined?

Alimony can be determined in two ways. One of those ways is for the court to determine the suitability of alimony. The second of those ways is for the former couple to come to an agreement about alimony payments. If the court has to decide on the suitability of alimony, the ability of one spouse to pay and the need of the other spouse to receive are the points that come into play.

How long is alimony paid?

There are three terms for alimony that are covered in Florida statutes. Long-term alimony is alimony that will be paid out for more than 17 years. Mid-term alimony is paid out for seven to 17 years. Short-term alimony is paid out for up to seven years.

What are the tax implications of alimony?

The Internal Revenue Service has specific rules governing how much of an alimony payment is considered tax deductible. The tax implications of alimony are considered as one of the factors of alimony payment suitability if the court is left to decide on alimony payments.

There are several other factors that determine the suitability of alimony payments. Knowing these factors, which include how long you have been married, certain earning capacity considerations and other factors, can make it easier for you to determine how to handle the alimony aspect of your divorce.

Source: Our Family Wizard, "Your Florida Divorce - What To Expect" accessed Jan. 23, 2015

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