When Florida couples decide to divorce, alimony can be an important part of the settlement. Because Florida is an equitable distribution state, marital assets may be distributed in a manner that is fair to both parties, rather than a strict 50/50 split. Alimony comes in addition to the distribution of property and may vary significantly depending on the length of the marriage and the financial differences between the spouses.
Forms of alimony in Florida
In Florida, alimony can take several forms. It can include temporary, durational, bridge-the-gap, permanent or rehabilitative spousal support, and payments may be made periodically or in one lump sum. Rather than traditional monthly or annual alimony payments, lump sum alimony is paid all at once, as the name implies.
Pros and cons of lump sum alimony
There are positives and negatives for both parties when it comes to lump sum alimony. It may be more difficult to meet the immediate obligation and could create a significant financial burden for the payer, especially because alimony is often separate from asset distribution. However, lump sum alimony may be considered part of equitable distribution in some cases.
Concerns for paying and receiving spouses
For payers, a lump sum payment offers the opportunity to end obligations to a former spouse at one time, rather than stretching them out over the years. Similarly, the recipient may prefer a lump sum payment in order to prepare for their financial future. The lump sum payment may enable them to make a big purchase, like a new home, or pursue school or retraining. However, this can also have a downside. Recipients may need to develop a strong savings and investment plan to ensure their alimony funds last over time.