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How is Alimony Terminated in Florida?

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In a typical divorce, if one spouse has a need for alimony, and the other spouse has the ability to pay alimony, a spouse will likely be required to pay alimony during and after the divorce proceedings. Florida law provides for multiple types of alimony that are meant for different purposes and can last for varying lengths of time. However, there are certain life situations that can trigger the termination of spousal support in Florida. At the Law Offices of David L. Hirschberg, we have helped many clients understand what qualifies for the termination of alimony in the Boca Raton area and are here to advise you on your divorce situation. Call or contact the office today to schedule a consultation.

Termination By Agreement

The most common form of alimony termination is by agreement. In the finalized divorce agreement, a couple can agree to the terms of a specific type of spousal support for a certain length of time or for a specified amount. Alimony can also terminate by agreement upon a triggering event, such as the retirement of the spouse paying alimony or the spouse receiving alimony completing certain education requirements for a new job.

Termination By Death

Alimony is automatically terminated upon the death of either former spouse. If the spouse receiving alimony passes away, their children are not entitled to continued spousal support payments, nor would the heirs of the spouse paying alimony be required to continue making them. This is because alimony is considered a contract between spouses, and if one party to the contract dies it becomes automatically void.

Termination By Remarriage

Spousal support is also terminated if the spouse receiving alimony gets remarried. Payments end on the date of remarriage, with a couple of specific exceptions. If the spouse paying alimony was ordered by the court to make a lump sum alimony payment or property transfer as an element of the finalized divorce, this must still occur even if the spouse receiving alimony gets remarried.

Termination By Cohabitation

One final situation that can trigger the termination of alimony is cohabitation. Florida law defines cohabitation as a living arrangement where the spouse receiving support is living with, and receiving financial assistance from, another person that is not related by marriage or blood. Cohabitation is seen as a substitute for remarriage, and Florida courts do not want a former spouse taking advantage of alimony laws while being supported by another person. In order to determine whether a couple is cohabitating, the court will look at whether they claim to be married, use the same mailing address, the length of cohabitation, whether and how much financial assistance is provided, if the couple has purchased property together, and any other relevant factors.  Cohabitation alone does not justify a modification or termination of alimony.  There must also exist a supportive relationship.  If it is established that the alimony recipient is in a supportive relationship, the court is empowered to reduce, or even terminate the alimony.

Talk To Our Office Now

The termination of alimony can have significant financial implications for both former spouses and should only be handled by experienced Boca Raton family attorneys. To learn more about whether your situation triggers the termination of spousal support, call or contact the Law Offices of David L. Hirschberg today.

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