Florida’s lawmakers have talked about changing alimony laws for a significant amount of time, but not much has happened. Now, there is an alimony bill that the governor could potentially sign. The new alimony bill would replace laws that designed alimony for times when women were unlikely to get divorced and had little economic power.
In those times, permanent alimony was important. Women who were unmarried could struggle to survive, since working was less common and they could also be in charge of raising children. Today, permanent alimony doesn’t make as much sense. For some couples, permanent alimony could mean paying from a young age until death, which is sometimes decades.
The current laws are harmful to some families, and the majority of the public and lawmakers don’t believe it’s fair. Finding a new solution is difficult, though. In 2013 and 2016, lawmakers have agreed to update the laws. In both years, the governor vetoed the bills.
That may not happen this time thanks to Senate Bill 412. It does not have retroactive provisions, protecting those who have won permanent alimony in the past. Additionally, it addresses changes to the United States economy and how people earn today.
Alimony can become a contentious topic in divorces, and it’s important that the state laws get it right. If you’re interested in how this potential change in the law could affect you, your attorney can help. Alimony may be important to you, so knowing exactly what to expect when you seek it is vital to knowing if you’ll be financially secure following divorce.
Source: Orlando Sentinel, “Commentary: Finally, an alimony bill Scott would sign,” Alan Frisher, May 24, 2017