Like many other states, Florida allows for the payment of alimony from one former spouse to another. While most people think of alimony as associated with an absolute dissolution of marriage, that is, a conventional divorce, alimony may be available as part of Florida’s limited dissolution proceeding as well.

There are several different types of alimony available to residents of Lakeland and the surrounding communities in Central Florida.

The most expansive type of alimony is called permanent, meaning that one spouse will be paying support to the other spouse indefinitely. This type is not available in all cases and may be particularly hard to obtain when a marriage did not last for a long time. The point of this type of alimony is effectively to continue the financial arrangement between the spouses that existed during the marriage.

Another type of alimony is called durational alimony. Like permanent alimony, the point is to provide support to one spouse so he or she is not left in bad financial circumstances after a marriage ends. However, unlike permanent alimony, the obligation to pay will stop at a definite point in time.

It is available for those who are, for whatever reason, not eligible for permanent alimony but who still could use the financial help.

Two other types of alimony are referred to as bridge-the-gap and rehabilitative, and they each serve a more specific purpose than do the other types of alimony. With respect to bridge-the-gap, the payments are supposed to help with a spouse’s short-term needs as he or she makes adjustments after the breakup.

Rehabilitative alimony, which may last a bit longer, is designed to give a spouse some support so he or she can get education or training that may be needed in order to return to the workforce.

Which type of alimony will get awarded, as well as the terms and amount thereof, depends on a number of factors which are best discussed with an experienced family law attorney.