Will alimony be awarded in your divorce? We will give you an honest legal opinion, and vigorously state your case to the judge, but ultimately the court decides unless the parties otherwise agree. For more information,schedule a free consultation at our Jacksonville office.


Despite language in an antenuptial agreement (commonly known as a “Prenup”), or in a post-nuptial ageement for that matter, where one party has agreed to be awarded no alimony or assistance with attorney’s fees in the event of a dissolution of marriage or separation, the Court DOES have the power to award alimony or attorney’s fees on a temporary basis while such an action is pending.

SeeBelcher v. Belcher, So. 2d 7 (Florida 1972).

While most attorneys will require a retainer prior to taking any case, it is important to know that you can still request financial assistance for both household bills and other needs, as well as reimbursement or assitance with future attorney’s fees (and court costs), during the pendency of your divorce or action for alimoy connected with a divorce (separation needs), despite having waived the right to financial assistance in a pre or post nuptial agreement!

The Law Office of Summer R. Nichols is experienced with handling this exact situation and is ready to represent you and assert your rights under Florida law.

Beware that if you are a payor spouse, lump sum alimony, unlike other types of alimony, is NOT tax deductible to you. If your tax consequence would be huge, consider a different alimony scheme!

Sure, you may recognize the familiar rule that alimony terminates upon death or remarriage. However, alimony can also be terminated or modified when a former spouse begins cohabitating with another individual.However, cohabitiation is only grounds for a modification of alimonywhen that cohabitation is “financially beneficial” — meaning that the boyfriend or girlfriend of the former spouse is not only living with the former spouse, but helps to pay the household bills, etc., thereby reducing the cohabititing spouse’s “need” for alimony.

A recent appellate court case reaffirmed the financially beneficial cohabitation rule. See Murphy v. Murphy, 3D11-1604 (Fla. 3rd DCA October 3, 2012), where the Court found the former wife was in a supportive relationship, but received no economic support from her boyfriend, and therefore denied the Former Husband’s request to modify alimony.

In fact,the fact that a former spouse is receiving enough alimony to support a live-in boyfriend or girlfriend could be grounds to go ahead and reduce the alimony based on a showing of less need on the part of the cohabitating spouse!

This case courtesy of Michael Mattson, mediator

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