Permanent Alimony in Peril

Chad M. Layton, Esq.
April 7, 2015

Permanent Alimony in Peril
By: Chad M. Layton, Esq.

    The long road to ending Permanent Alimony in future divorce cases has now made it one step closer to becoming Florida Law. 

    On March 17, 2015, a Florida House Sub-Committee passed proposed legislation which  would end Permanent Alimony in Florida.  The argument which proponents of alimony reform used to support this tidal change in divorce law is that disparate results continue to be rendered under the broad discretion provided to Family Law Judges all over the State of Florida.  The current system allows far too much discretion for the Judges to determine the amount and duration of alimony.

    Proponents of large scale alimony reform argue that a more structured system would reduce the amount of litigation connected to alimony throughout Palm Beach County and the State of Florida.

    This Bill would provide an alimony formula to be used by the Court.  A legal presumption would be created which uses the length of marriage and monthly income of the parties to calculate an alimony obligation.  Under the new law, the duration of alimony and specific amount of alimony to be paid could become much more consistent and allow for the legal community to more accurately predict outcomes in divorce cases.

    Some legislators and attorneys do not agree with this new formula which they feel creates a “one size fits all” measure that does not render equitable judgments taking into account all circumstances of the parties.  Many opposing the Alimony Bill say that the changes would favor the payor spouse over the recipient spouse.  This argument is supported by the fact that Permanent Alimony would no longer be available and short-term marriage may not be eligible for alimony at all.

    Additional issues continue to be reviewed which include how child support obligations would be affected by the proposed changes to alimony. 

    Further information regarding Divorce, Alimony and Marital Law issues in Lake Worth, West Palm Beach, Delray Beach and the surrounding areas is available at

    If you are seriously considering Divorce or a Family Law matter in Lake Worth, West Palm Beach, Delray Beach, Boynton Beach or the surrounding areas, please call (561) 585-4631 to schedule an initial consultation with Divorce Attorney Chad M. Layton, Esq. or e-mail:  

Harvey, Waddell & Layton
101 N. J Street, Suite 1
Lake Worth, FL 33460
(561) 585-4631    

101 North "J" Street, Suite 1, Lake Worth, Florida 33460  |  T: 561.585.4631  |  F: 561.585.1317
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