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What strategies do Florida judges employ for determining alimony?

On Behalf of | May 1, 2020 | Alimony |

Family law judges in every state including Florida use different formulas for determining how much alimony a spouse should pay another when they divorce. Even still, it’s possible for husbands and wives who are ordered to pay spousal support to negotiate up or down any amounts that they ultimately have to pay or receive. Spouses must generally be able to present certain information in their Florida divorce case to warrant a deviation from the original amount.

Formulas like the ones that Florida uses takes into account how old spouses are, how much income they each make and the length of their marriage when determining how much alimony should be paid. Fort Myers judges generally have the authority to deny spousal support requests if husbands and wives agree to a different amount other than what the formula calls for.

The court generally uses the paying spouse’s income to determine how much support they may owe their spouse. They’ll likely look at the recipient’s net income, or how much they take home after taxes, to determine how much alimony is warranted as well.

A Florida judge almost always takes into account the standard of living that a spouse enjoyed while they were still married and tries to make sure that whatever alimony that they receive allows the husband or wife to maintain their same quality of life. It’s not uncommon for attorneys to ask for credit or bank statements to gain a better understanding of the quality of living that you both enjoyed.

There are some instances in which Fort Myers couples agree to a tradeoff of child support for alimony as a way of keeping their tax burdens low. The former is tax-deductible whereas spousal support isn’t.

It’s common for some spouses to agree to lump sum alimony payments either. This often happens in cases in which a paying husband or wife doesn’t want to have any lingering emotional or financial responsibilities to have to worry about.

There’s a lot that goes into determining a spousal support award. Many financial documents have to be compiled, analyzed and plugged into the appropriate formulas to come up with an amount. It’s only once this has happened that final payment discussions may finally commence. An attorney can advocate for you through this whole process so that you end up getting a fair shake in your Fort Myers divorce case.


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