If you are currently considering divorce, it's likely that your concerns for your financial future are second only to the care of your children. Most married couples pool their incomes when it comes to paying for housing, food, transportation and the majority of other necessities. Depending on the length of your marriage, it's likely that both you and your future ex-spouse have come to rely on those shared funds to maintain your current standard of living.
A recent disagreement late between Florida lawmakers last month has put the brakes on a potential realignment of the state's alimony laws. Alimony, also known as spousal support, is money paid by one spouse to another after a divorce to support that spouse receiving those funds. Typically, Florida family courts will award spousal support in situations where a spouse may not be able to support themselves or their children following a divorce.
While the word divorce may be used in Florida, the official term that the state has decided to use is actually dissolution of marriage. Additionally, fault does not have to be shown in a divorce. There are two main types of dissolution of marriage that will be used: regular and simplified.
While common law marriages were fairly common in the 19th and even 20th centuries, these marriage are no longer considered valid in every state. In 1877, the Supreme Court ruled that it was up to individual states to decide if they wanted to prohibit common law marriage. As of 1968, Florida no longer recognizes common law marriages as legally valid. This includes marriages that originated in a different state that do still recognize common law marriages.
There are a variety of reasons why couples eventually decide to end their marriages. Perhaps some form of marital misconduct like infidelity or abandonment played a pivotal role. Still, for some others both spouses may have simply grown disinterested in continuing the relationship. Regardless of the reasons for divorce, the fact remains that fairness regarding the split should be a paramount concern to both parties.
Florida is one of the few states that still allows courts to grant alimony payments for a lifetime -- some say it's a throwback to past family cultures, when women were less likely to work outside the home. Today, many other states have limitations on how alimony can be awarded, and Florida legislators have been trying to enact similar rules in the state for several years.
Florida residents have likely heard anecdotal information about the rate of divorce throughout the country. Most people say that divorce rates are rising, but statistics from the U.S. Census Bureau that compare divorce rates from 1990 and 2009 seem to indicate otherwise.
In Florida, the requirement to ask for a divorce -- or a "dissolution of marriage," as it is called within the state's legal system -- is simply that your marriage is irretrievably broken. You just have to show that you cannot fix it, and then either you or your spouse can go forward with the paperwork. While fault used to be considered, changes to the law mean that it no longer matters at all.
We often talk about Florida men and women who suffer from domestic abuse in physical and emotional terms; perhaps they were struck by their partner or abused through harsh, hateful comments. Did you know that there is another type of spousal abuse, however? It is called financial abuse, and it plays a major role in many Florida divorce proceedings. Here are a few indicators of financial abuse, along with methods for circumventing the situation to build a better life.
The owner of a famous East Coast deli has been ordered to pay a massive sum in spousal support to her estranged husband, who has moved to Florida. The man, who had been the manager of New York City's Carnegie Deli, will receive $11,500 each month in alimony from his wife. His ex-wife left him after discovering that he may have been cheating on her with a waitress at their restaurant.