If spouses have been married for many years, the Florida court will usually award a financially dependent spouse alimony in their divorce. Although when the spouse receiving alimony remarries, moves in with someone else or improves their financial situations, the spouse paying alimony will usually want to reduce or eliminate their alimony payments. This article explains how remarriage and cohabitation affects alimony in Florida.
The impact of remarriage on alimony in Florida
Periodic alimony that gets paid in regularly scheduled payments over time will automatically end when the supported spouse gets remarried. In these cases, the supporting spouse can end the payments without going to court to get approval. If the alimony has been paid in a lump sum or by transferring property, the spouse’s remarriage doesn’t change the paying spouse’s obligation to make the lump-sum payment.
The impact of cohabitation on alimony in Florida
Florida courts can modify or terminate alimony when the supported spouse begins living with another person. In these cases, the supported spouse must be living with and receiving financial support from another person that is not related to them. Florida courts consider a number of factors when determining whether to decrease or terminate their alimony:
- Whether the supported spouse claims to be married to the person they are now living with, whether they use the same last name and whether they use the same mailing address.
- How long the supported spouse has lived with the other person.
- How much financial support living with the other person gives the supported spouse.
- Whether the supported spouse works with or works for the other person.
- Whether they purchased property together.
- Any other factors that show a financial relationship.
Terminating or modifying alimony in Florida
If you are paying alimony and your ex-spouse has a significant change in financial circumstances, you may want to decrease or even terminate your alimony. Ask your ex-spouse to see if they will agree to a change in your alimony. If they agree you can both sign an agreement and file it with the circuit court clerk’s office. If your ex-spouse does not agree, you can file a motion to terminate or modify alimony with the circuit court clerk’s office. You will then have to attend a hearing where you must show evidence in your ex-spouse’s change in financial circumstances.