Alimony, sometimes referred to as spousal support, is money one individual is ordered to pay to his or her ex-spouse following a divorce. Last year, Florida lawmakers attempted to pass a bill to stop permanent alimony, but, due to a veto by the governor, the bill never became law. Florida residents who are struggling financially due to court-ordered alimony payments may be interested in Divorce Corp. and the growing push for reforms.
In the documentary, judges are shown abusing the system and wreaking havoc in the lives of those who pass through their courtrooms. It also shows children being ripped from their homes because of family court decisions. Family Law Reform, a nonprofit group geared toward building support for reform before this year’s session starts, supports the film’s screening and sees it as a way to bring more exposure to the need for reform.
The president of the group also says that they are attempting to help people understand that alimony reform is vital. In the alimony bill that failed to pass in 2013, the goal was to end permanent alimony and place a payment cap based upon years of marriage and spouses’ annual incomes. In addition, the bill pushed for judges to be allowed to make changes to existing agreements between exes.
Courts determine whether alimony will be awarded based upon several factors, such as how long a marriage lasted and the level of financial dependency of the spouse requesting alimony. For Florida residents who are paying alimony to ex-spouses who no longer need the support, family law reform may not happen soon enough. To pursue spousal support modifications under current laws, the support of an experienced attorney may prove invaluable.
Source: Miami Herald, “Alimony reform supporters rally around documentary film“, Kathleen Mcgrory, Jan. 21, 2015