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Pursuant to Florida Statute 61.08, there are many different types of alimony that a court can award a Husband or Wife in a Florida divorce case. These include permanent alimony, temporary alimony, bridge-the-gap alimony, rehabilitative alimony, durational alimony and lump sum alimony. Depending upon the circumstances of your divorce case, the court can award one kind of alimony, or a combination of two or more types of alimony, to meet your specific and individual needs.

Lump sum alimony is the most poorly understood and underutilized forms of alimony that the Florida Courts have the discretion to award. In general and simple terms, a lump sum alimony award is appropriate when a spouse can prove "unusual circumstances" or a "special necessity". It is proper for the Court to award lump sum alimony as a means of providing support, when other forms of alimony are unable to meet those special needs.

For example, in a long term marriage (which is defined as marriages of 17 years duration or longer), when the payor's income is insufficient to meet the identifiable needs of the payee spouse, the payee spouse might request an award of lump sum alimony, of some other asset, to assist in paying his/her living expenses, in certain special situations. These situations would include if the payee/recipient spouse is in poor health and unable to work, and needs more money to pay his/her bills than the payee can reasonably afford. Also, an award of lump sum alimony of the marital residence is also appropriate in some situations, when there are health or physical issues which impede or prohibit one spouse's ability to work and the other spouse does not earn enough money to pay sufficient alimony.

For more information on lump sum alimony, or any other questions or concerns regarding Florida alimony and divorce, please call a Board Certified Attorney at Sidweber and Weintraub, P.A. for a consultation. The expert family law attorneys at Sidweber and Weintraub, P.A. are specialists in dealing with alimony issues and can craft and create an alimony scenario that is specific to you, your case and your needs.

Submitted by Karen B. Weintraub, Esquire

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