Alimony FAQs

Florida Alimony | FAQs

Alimony is a term that is often thrown around, but few people understand what alimony is, how it differs from spousal support, and how the type and amount of alimony is determined. Allow Florida alimony attorneys at Silverman, Mack & Associates to guide you through Florida alimony. The following information contains the most frequently asked questions pertaining to alimony and reliable answers.

Do I have to pay alimony?

You may. Courts will evaluate several factors to determine if alimony is necessary. If you are ordered to pay alimony, you will be legally required to make consistent and timely payments to your ex-spouse for the designated period of time.

Is there a difference between alimony and spousal support?

Yes. Spousal support is a temporary payment that a spouse receives during significant periods, such as during the divorce process. It is also possible for a spouse to provide spousal support during the course of the marriage. Meanwhile, alimony payments are court-ordered provisions and terms of a divorce. If you are uncertain whether you will be required to pay alimony or spousal support during or after divorce, consider speaking to an alimony lawyer in Gainesville, FL.

Because of the similarities shared between alimony and spousal support, the terms are often substituted for one another.

How is alimony defined?

Alimony is a series of court-ordered payments that are designed to support a spouse after a divorce.

How is spousal support defined?

Spousal support refers to financial assistance that a dependent spouse receives for independence and survival.

How do courts determine if alimony is necessary?

Courts will consider the following factors to determine if alimony is necessary:

  • The reasons for divorce
  • The presence of abuse, adultery and other wrongdoings during the course of the marriage
  • The level of education and skills of each spouse
  • The level and type of employment of each spouse
  • The presence of children
  • The length of the marriage
  • The amount of income, property and debt of each spouse
  • Inheritances and stocks of each spouse
  • The quality of life during the marriage
  • The method for property distribution between the spouses

Are there different types of alimony? If so, what are they?

Yes. The different types of alimony include:

Permanent Alimony

Permanent alimony is assigned for the full duration of an ex-spouse’s life.

Temporary Alimony

Temporary alimony is assigned for a specified period of time.

Lump Sum Alimony

Lump sum alimony is assigned on a one-time basis. It is often ordered to level out the distribution of property and assets between spouses during divorce.

Bridge the Gap Alimony

Bridge the gap alimony is assigned to assist ex-spouses with transitioning into a new lifestyle following divorce.

Reimbursement Alimony

Reimbursement alimony is assigned to compensate an ex-spouse for investing a significant amount of monetary resources into a marriage or into an ex-spouse’s goals.

Rehabilitative Alimony

Rehabilitative alimony is assigned to support an ex-spouse while he/she receives training and develops skills to (re)enter the employment market as a competitive job applicant.

Who is responsible for determining the type of alimony and how much alimony is owed?

The judge in authority will determine the type and amount of alimony that is owed. It is also possible for accountants and other financial experts to be involved on the case.

I desire to modify my alimony payments. Is this possible?

Yes. Visit our Florida divorce law firm if you desire to modify alimony payments. Often, circumstances such as a new marriage or change in income may warrant a judge’s approval for an alimony modification request/petition.

What do I do if I do not desire to receive alimony?

During the divorce process, it is your responsibility to inform your attorney and the judge in authority that you do not desire to receive alimony. In the event that you are still granted alimony, you should accept it.

Are there consequences for refusal to pay alimony?

Yes. Common sanctions include:

  • Paycheck deductions
  • License suspension
  • Community service
  • Additional fees

If I do not pay alimony, can I go to jail?

Yes. Always keep in mind that alimony is a court-ordered provision. This means that you have a legal obligation to pay alimony. You may go to jail if you consistently fail to make alimony payments.

Is it possible to be arrested for late alimony payments?

Yes. Excessive tardiness without compelling influences may constitute an arrest.

Are alimony payments accessible via public records?


Visit our divorce law firm in Gainesville, FL to learn more about Florida alimony.