The answer is that it depends on the type of alimony and the terms of any marital settlement agreement incorporated into the final divorce decree. Today we will take a closer look at this question.
The court may order permanent spousal support to meet the supported spouse’s needs and “necessities of life” in accord with the standard of living during the marriage if that person cannot meet their own needs after divorcing. Florida statute provides that permanent alimony stops if either party dies or the alimony recipient remarries.
While that rule for termination upon remarriage seems cut and dried, if the parties signed a marital settlement agreement that says remarriage will NOT end the alimony obligation, the agreement’s terms trump the statute’s provision otherwise, so remarriage would not terminate the alimony obligation in that situation.
This type of spousal support is capped at two years of payments. Its purpose is to assist the recipient with specific financial needs during the transition from marriage to postdivorce life. Like permanent alimony, Florida law provides that bridge-the-gap support terminates on the death of either spouse or the recipient’s remarriage. However, the statute also says that the court may not modify the duration of this kind of alimony.
Rehabilitative alimony is ordered to provide support to an ex-spouse while they rehabilitate their vocational or professional skills and knowledge through work experience, training or education to “assist a party in establishing the capacity for self-support” under a “specific and defined rehabilitative plan.”
Florida law provides three reasons for termination of rehabilitative alimony but does not specifically mention automatic termination upon remarriage of the recipient. The paying party could request termination upon a showing of a substantial, material change in circumstances – arguing to the court that the remarriage is such a change.
Durational spousal support is like permanent alimony except there is an end date – the recipient is not seen as requiring support permanently. Also, like permanent alimony, the statute provides that durational alimony automatically ends if either party dies or the recipient remarries. Durational alimony cannot exceed the length of the marriage.
The impact of remarrying on an alimony award can be a complex legal question. A Florida family lawyer can answer questions and provide guidance in a particular situation.