Alimony Reform Bills Filed In Florida
With the recent filing of two proposed bills, Florida politicians are spearheading efforts to move alimony reform forward within a state widely believed to be among the worst toward men when it comes to awarding spousal support.
Rep. Ritch Workman and Sen. Diaz de la Portilla have filed identical bills in the House and Senate, respectively, and will work to convince legislators that the state’s alimony laws are badly broken and need to be brought into the 21st century.
According to Florida Alimony Reform, the bills include provisions that will:
* Limit the maximum duration of alimony based on the length of marriage;
* Terminate alimony upon full retirement age (currently 66 years old, determined by the U.S. Social Security Administration), except in extreme circumstances;
* Cap alimony at no more than 20 percent of the payer’s net monthly income;
* Allow existing alimony payers to modify their judgments based on the new law;
* Revise cohabitation standards;
* Prohibit using a payer’s current spouse’s income or assets in a modification; and
* Revise provisions for the tax treatment and consequences of alimony.
In many states, including Florida, alimony is left open-ended and the decision is left up to the judge; there are no specific guidelines.
Even though state and federal constitutions have equal protection clauses that say we are all equal in the eyes of the law, men pay alimony in 97% of the cases, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.