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When Can I Stop Paying Alimony?

In Florida, courts often award alimony to the financially dependent spouse, especially if the marriage had a particularly long duration. However, alimony is generally not designed to last forever. If your former spouse remarried or began living with a new partner, this could effectively terminate your alimony payments.

Alimony in Florida

Before examining the circumstances in which the court might terminate alimony payments, it would be helpful to review how alimony is determined in Florida. There are different types of alimony awards, each of which is designed to fulfill a different purpose. For example, a judge might award financial support for a limited amount of time to reimburse a spouse for the contributions he or she made during the marriage.

When determining alimony in Florida, some of the factors a judge might consider include:

  • The length of the marriage
  • The lifestyle enjoyed throughout the marriage
  • The contributions made by each spouse
  • The childcare responsibilities of each spouse
  • The health and age of each spouse
  • The earning potential of each spouse
  • The financial resources of each spouse
  • Any other factor that might be relevant to this decision

Terminating Alimony

If you are making periodic alimony payments, these obligations will automatically end once your former spouse remarries, beginning on the date of the remarriage, without having to return to court. If you were required to make a lump-sum alimony payment, however, it is unlikely that it would be affected by your ex-spouse’s remarriage. If your former spouse had a symbolic ceremony with a new partner, but did not officially remarry, your alimony payments would not be automatically terminated. Only a legal marriage can yield those results.

If your former spouse’s financial circumstances substantially changed, you could potentially have your alimony payments modified or terminated. It would be easiest to first find out if you and your former spouse can agree to a modification of your payments. If you can, you will still need to draft a formal agreement and file it with the circuit court clerk’s office. If you cannot agree, you can take your request to court.

Lastly, your alimony payments can be terminated or modified if your former spouse lives with a new partner. Here are some of the factors a judge will consider when determining if your former spouse is cohabitating with another person:

  • If the supported spouse and the cohabitant are using the same last name, claim to be married, or have the same mailing address
  • How long the supported spouse has been cohabitating with another person
  • If the supported spouse and the cohabitant bought property together
  • Other factors that might show a financial relationship with the supported spouse and the cohabitant

Unless your alimony payments were automatically terminated after your former spouse remarried, you will need to go to court to modify or terminate your payments, which can be a complicated process. Make sure you hire an experienced attorney to assist you.

Reach Out to a Knowledgeable Family Law Attorney Today!

If you believe your alimony payments should be terminated, contact Beatriz Zyne, P.A. for the experienced legal guidance you need to achieve the results you deserve.

Call us today at (305) 876-6138 to schedule a case review.