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Upon The Dissolution Of A Long-term Marriage, There Is A Rebuttable Presumption That Permanent Alimony Is Appropriate

December 22, 2015 by  
Filed under Uncategorized



In Quinones v. Quinones, the 5th District Court of Appeals for the State of Florida reversed the trial court based upon its having mistakenly characterized a 17 year marriage as a medium term marriage.  The Court ruled that pursuant to the applicable Florida Statutes the trial court should have considered the marriage as a long term marriage and applied a rebutable presumption that permanent alimony was appropriate.  The former husband had previously stipulated in the case as to the former wife’s need and his ability to pay alimony so the failure to award alimony could not be properly explained on that basis. Even if the former husband’s circumstances had changed the former wife’s need had not so at least nominal alimony should have been awarded.

In dissolution of marriage actions, alimony is awarded based on statutory guidelines. Section 61.08(4), Florida Statutes (2014), reads:
For purposes of determining alimony, there is a rebuttable presumption that a short-term marriage is a marriage having a duration of less than 7 years, a moderate-term marriage is a marriage having a duration of greater than 7 years but less than 17 years, and long-term marriage is a marriage having a duration of 17 years or greater. The length of a marriage is the period of time from the date of marriage until the date of filing of an action for dissolution of marriage.
Permanent alimony is “awarded to provide for the needs and necessities of life as they were established during the marriage of the parties for a party who lacks the financial ability to meet his or her needs and necessities of life following a dissolution of marriage.” § 61.08(8), Fla. Stat.
If you need to discuss your divorce and the potential for an alimony award with one of our attorneys contact us on (786) 539-4935 to schedule a consultation.


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