Florida does not have a specific requirement for separation prior to the filing of a petition for dissolution of marriage. However, it does have provisions that address the support of a spouse and any children in the event that there is a separation without the filing of a petition. If two spouses are living separately, one may seek an adjudication from the court to determine support payments for both the spouse and any children, as well as a decision about the custody and residence of the children.
This action will not preclude either party from filing a petition for dissolution of the marriage or any other relief. If there are children, then the court may require that the parents participate in mediation in order to reach a resolution about who is responsible for what if the parents cannot agree.
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This mediation may result in a decision about support payments, the primary residence of the child ren , custody and visitation, as well as outlining parental responsibility. The mediator will prepare a consent order and submit it to the court if the parties are able to reach an agreement. Once entered, this order will be enforced in the same manner as any other court order. However, this only occurs if the parties can reach a consensus as the mediator does not have the authority to force a resolution.
If the mediation fails, the court will make these decisions after hearing the evidence. Any issues not amicably resolved between the spouses will be adjudicated by the judge after the final hearing. It is possible for the parties to agree to some of the conditions and submit a formal document to the court in order to minimize the issues to be determined by the court.
These pre-determined matters may include the handling of any minor children. As part of the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage, a woman may seek to restore her maiden name. The judge can order this as part of the decree. Although the dissolution of a marriage will involve emotional turmoil and distress, it is important to remember that maintaining a clear focus on the fair distribution of assets and the determination of parental responsibilities will help get you through the process. If you are considering or going through a divorce in Florida, the experienced attorneys at Ayo and Iken PLC are here to offer experienced representation in a compassionate manner.
Zealously representing the interests of our clients in Orlando, Tampa, Clearwater, Lakeland, Wesley, Chapel, New Port Richey, Miami, Florida and many other cities, we are dedicated to providing the best possible legal services. We understand how difficult this process is for you and invite you to come to our office for a free consultation, where we will listen to you and present legal options. To schedule an appointment, please call us at Jason Ponder was able to answer my questions on the initial consultation.
I hired his services to expedite a court date for my final dissolution. Once he sent paperwork to court my court date was scheduled within 3 weeks. Now I have closure and can move forward with life. Debbie — Avvo. Need assistance with this form? Free Consultation is limited to individuals considering hiring an attorney.
Lyman T. Fletcher
Not all situations qualify. Fee charged for appellate case evaluations. While I was living out of state, I was extremely fortunate to have Attorney Iken in my corner during my recent divorce. My first two lawyers were somewhat intimidated by the opposing lawyer and consequently my case suffered because of it.
Attorney Iken proved to be a very competent, compassionate and consistent defender of my best interests. He was a good listener who offered accurate and comforting advice.
For marriages that lasted less than seven years, there must be an exceptional circumstance in order for a court to award permanent alimony. After deciding that alimony is appropriate, the court must decide on the appropriate type and amount of the alimony award. To do this, the court considers a number of factors that are detailed in the Florida statutes. These factors are designed to assist the court in arriving at an alimony award amount that is fair and appropriate under the circumstances.
The factors a court may consider include:. For instance, if the court found that John had extramarital affairs and that he regularly gave his partners extravagant gifts to the detriment of his wife, the court can use this information in determining whether alimony is appropriate for Louise. Child support obligations: If there are children from the marriage, each spouse will have an obligation to provide support for those children. While child support is not the same as alimony, a court can consider the nature of the child support order in evaluating whether the obligor spouse has an ability to pay alimony.
Supportive relationships: Sometimes following the filing of a divorce petition, one or both ex-spouses may decide to go live with friends. While living with their friends, the ex-spouses may pool their resources with their new roommates, sharing expenses such as rent, groceries, and utilities. Life changes such as an unexpected illness or disability, unemployment, or a remarriage can all result in an alimony award being modified or terminated. If any alimony is sought — and especially if alimony is awarded — both the obligor spouse and the receiving spouse will want to consider the tax consequences of such an award.
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How alimony will be treated for tax purposes depends on whether the alimony is to be paid on a periodic basis for example, monthly, biweekly, or otherwise or whether it is to be paid in one lump-sum payment. It is therefore important that divorcing spouses consult with a financial or tax advisor if alimony is a part of their divorce. The obligor spouse may feel this is inappropriate since his or her ex-spouse is essentially being paid twice.
It must be remembered, though, that child support are payments that are made to help pay for the costs of raising children providing clothes, food, etc.
Because each type of support is meant for a different person, a court is free to award both types of support. Remember, though, that while child support must be awarded in any divorce case in which there is at least one minor child, an alimony award is discretionary and a court has the freedom to award alimony in an amount it feels appropriate based upon the facts and factors before the court.
If you feel that alimony might be or should be an issue in your Florida divorce, consulting with an experienced Florida divorce lawyer can be beneficial. If you are seeking alimony, an attorney can help you present the facts of your case persuasively to a judge and demonstrate that there is both a need and an ability to pay alimony in your case. Conversely, if your ex-spouse has requested alimony, an attorney can explore which statutory factors may be applicable in your case. These factors can result in either a lower alimony award or no alimony award at all.
A: Florida alimony law does not set specific numbers and there is no standard for amounts. But we do have an online tool that uses a national model for alimony. A: Under Florida law, alimony is usually ordered for long term marriages — over years long. For a short term marriage such as 3 years, alimony is rare, if not impossible. A: Yes.
Alimony payments depend on the income of both spouses. If income significantly changes, you can seek an alimony modification.
Depending on the exact type of alimony, it is normally always modifiable. A: Normal alimony, referred to as permanent periodic alimony is usually taxable to the recipient and deductible to the payer. But if the two of you enter an agreement for alimony, you can designate the tax treatment and the IRS will respect that designation. Q: I have been married for 4 years and my spouse has supported me the entire time. Can I get alimony? A: Very unlikely.
Normally you need to be married at least 7 years for a decent alimony claim. Q: We have been married for 5 years and separated for several years. A: Again, very unlikely. Your financial existence was separate from your spouse when you began to live apart. You cannot milk out the length of your marriage just to prove alimony is needed.
Also, by living on your own for that many years — you have proven you can live without alimony. Q: My married is 20 years long. Does that mean I will definitely receive alimony? But based on the length of marriage, your alimony claim may be pretty strong. I hired Howard Iken as my attorney to handle my divorce case. Not only did he secure a win for me in the eventual divorce trial, he was also successful in having the post divorce trial petitions 4 filed by my ex-husband dismissed.
Iken is very professional and adept at developing strategies that are favorable to his clients.