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Deciding whether to provide alimony during a divorce

While many Florida couples continue to live happily together, it's no secret that a sizable percentage of marriages end in divorce. Achieving an equitable separation can be a great challenge when each party holds a fundamental interest in the outcome. One woman details her experience with post-marital conflict involving alimony, one of the most contentious issues in any divorce.

According to the woman, her husband expressed interest in earning another degree during their divorce proceeding; he requested that she provide him with spousal support for the two years he was scheduled to be enrolled. However, she believed him wholly capable of seeing to his own financial obligations and didn't understand why she should make herself responsible for them. After consulting with a third-party, the author says she realized how greatly the dispute was affecting her emotional health, and she was convinced to provide the requested maintenance for her own well-being.

The decision regarding whether or not to provide spousal maintenance depends on many factors: the standard of living prior to divorce, the marriage's duration, what each party contributed to the marriage and so on. Unfortunately, there is no "spousal calculator" to quickly determine one party's legal obligation to the other. In this case, the author's former spouse requested durational alimony -- alimony that is temporary in nature. Other forms of alimony may include rehabilitative, which seeks to redress some harm or deficiency in the marriage, and permanent, which can last as long as its name implies.

It's important to remember that every divorce originates in entirely distinct circumstances. What works for someone in one situation may not necessarily apply to another. Due to the complexity of the issues involved, many people consult with qualified attorneys to represent their interests during a divorce negotiation.

Source: Huffington Post, "Do You Want To Be Right Or Do You Want To Be Happy?", Debbi Dickinson, June 18, 2013