family lawyer Tampa FL

Understanding Alimony Basics

Alimony can be a complex topic, so it’s important to consult with your Tampa, FL family lawyer to understand how it works. As a team dedicated to providing clear and comprehensive legal guidance, we at The McKinney Law Group are committed to helping our clients understand the basics of alimony. Here are some of the most frequently asked questions we encounter:

What Is Alimony And Why Is It Awarded?

Alimony, also known as spousal support, is a financial arrangement where one spouse provides support to the other after a divorce. The primary purpose of alimony is to mitigate any unfair economic effects of a divorce by providing a continuing income to a non-wage-earning or lower-wage-earning spouse. For instance, it may be granted to a spouse who has foregone career opportunities during the marriage or who needs time and resources to develop job skills to become self-sufficient.

How Is Alimony Determined?

The determination of alimony varies significantly based on jurisdiction, but there are common factors that most courts will consider. These include the length of the marriage, the standard of living established during the marriage, the age and physical and emotional condition of each spouse, the financial resources of each party, the time necessary for the recipient spouse to acquire sufficient education or training to find employment, and the contribution of each spouse to the marriage, including homemaking and child care.

Are There Different Types Of Alimony?

Yes, there are several types of alimony, and the specific circumstances of your case will determine which type is awarded. Temporary alimony provides support during the divorce process. Bridge-the-gap alimony assists the receiving spouse in transitioning from being married to single. Rehabilitative alimony supports a spouse in obtaining education, training, or work experience to become self-sufficient. Durational alimony provides financial assistance for a set period after a short or moderate-length marriage. Permanent alimony, which is less common, may be awarded after a long marriage if a spouse is unable to become financially independent.

Can Alimony Arrangements Be Modified Or Terminated?

Yes, alimony can often be modified or terminated. However, this depends on the type of alimony awarded and the specific terms of the alimony arrangement. Generally, a significant change in circumstances, such as a substantial change in income, remarriage of the recipient spouse, or retirement, can be grounds for the modification or termination of alimony.

How Does Alimony Affect Taxes?

The tax implications of alimony have changed following the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. For divorces finalized after December 31, 2018, alimony payments are no longer deductible for the payer, and the recipient does not include them as taxable income. This is a significant shift from previous rules and can impact how alimony is negotiated during divorce proceedings. It’s crucial to seek professional advice to understand how these changes may affect your financial situation.

Get In Touch With Us Today

At The McKinney Law Group, we understand that dealing with alimony and other aspects of a divorce can be challenging. Our team is here to offer the support and guidance you need during this difficult time. If you have further questions about alimony or any other family law matters, we invite you to contact us. Let us help you find the best possible solutions tailored to your unique situation.