Florida Senate - 2021 CS for SB 1922
By the Committee on Judiciary; and Senators Gruters and Hooper
1 A bill to be entitled
2 An act relating to dissolution of marriage; amending
3 s. 61.046, F.S.; revising the definition of the term
4 “income”; amending s. 61.08, F.S.; defining terms;
5 requiring the court to prioritize certain forms of
6 alimony; authorizing the court to grant permanent
7 alimony under certain circumstances; requiring the
8 court to make certain written findings in its awards
9 of alimony; prohibiting the court from denying or
10 granting an award of alimony solely on the basis of
11 adultery, with an exception; revising factors that the
12 court must consider in determining the proper type and
13 amount of alimony; authorizing a party to whom the
14 court has awarded alimony to purchase or maintain a
15 life insurance policy on the obligor’s life to protect
16 an award of alimony; requiring the obligor to
17 cooperate in the process of securing the life
18 insurance; deleting certain rebuttable presumptions
19 related to the duration of a marriage for purposes of
20 determining alimony; prohibiting an award of
21 rehabilitative alimony from exceeding specified
22 timeframes; revising a provision authorizing the
23 modification of rehabilitative alimony upon completion
24 of the rehabilitative plan to include a certain
25 timeframe; revising provisions related to durational
26 alimony; prohibiting the length of an award of
27 durational alimony from exceeding a specified
28 timeframe; specifying what constitutes the length of a
29 marriage for the purpose of determining durational
30 alimony; requiring the court to make certain written
31 findings when awarding durational alimony; providing a
32 formula for the calculation of durational alimony;
33 providing that a party who has reached retirement age
34 in accordance with specified provisions may not be
35 ordered to pay alimony; providing an exception;
36 establishing that alimony may not be awarded to a
37 party who has a certain monthly net income;
38 prohibiting social security retirement benefits from
39 being imputed to the obligor, with an exception;
40 requiring an obligee to meet certain requirements if
41 he or she alleges that a physical disability has
42 impaired his or her ability to earn the imputed
43 income; requiring the court to consider certain
44 payments made to the obligee when determining the
45 amount and length of rehabilitative or durational
46 alimony; providing applicability; amending s. 61.13,
47 F.S.; creating a presumption that equal time-sharing
48 is in the best interests of a child, with an
49 exception; providing applicability; deleting a
50 provision related to the development of a parenting
51 plan; amending s. 61.14, F.S.; authorizing the court
52 to order an obligee to reimburse alimony payments to
53 the obligor under certain circumstances; specifying a
54 timeframe for the court to consider a supportive
55 relationship between the obligee and another person
56 for purposes of reducing or terminating an award of
57 alimony or ordering reimbursement of alimony payments;
58 revising factors the court may consider when
59 determining whether a supportive relationship exists
60 or existed between the obligee and another person;
61 providing that an obligor’s subsequent remarriage or
62 cohabitation is not a basis for modification of
63 alimony; providing that the income and assets of the
64 obligor’s subsequent spouse are irrelevant to an
65 action for modification of alimony; requiring an
66 alimony obligation to terminate upon the obligor
67 reaching full retirement age; providing an exception;
68 authorizing the court to terminate an alimony
69 obligation if the obligor retires at a reasonable age
70 for his or her profession or line of work; requiring
71 the court to consider certain factors in determining
72 whether the obligor’s retirement age is reasonable;
73 authorizing an obligor to prospectively file a
74 petition for modification or termination of alimony,
75 effective upon his or her retirement; requiring a
76 court to modify or terminate an alimony award upon
77 retirement of the obligor, with an exception;
78 providing that certain benefits of the obligee
79 constitute a change in circumstance for which an
80 obligor may seek modification of an alimony award;
81 providing that certain agreements on alimony payments
82 are considered expressly modifiable or eligible for
83 termination under certain circumstances; providing
84 applicability; amending s. 61.19, F.S.; requiring the
85 court to grant a final judgment of dissolution of
86 marriage and reserve jurisdiction to adjudicate other
87 substantive issues, under certain circumstances;
88 providing for temporary orders necessary to protect
89 the parties and their children, if any; providing that
90 such temporary orders are effective until all other
91 issues are adjudicated by the court; providing
92 applicability; providing an effective date.
94 Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
96 Section 1. Subsection (8) of section 61.046, Florida
97 Statutes, is amended to read:
98 61.046 Definitions.—As used in this chapter, the term:
99 (8) “Income” means any form of payment to an individual,
100 regardless of source, including, but not limited to: wages,
101 salary, commissions and bonuses, compensation as an independent
102 contractor, worker’s compensation, disability benefits, annuity
103 and retirement benefits, pensions, dividends, interest,
104 royalties, trusts, and any other payments, made by any person,
105 private entity, federal or state government, or any unit of
106 local government. United States Department of Veterans Affairs
107 disability benefits and reemployment assistance or unemployment
108 compensation, as defined in chapter 443, are excluded from this
109 definition of income except for purposes of establishing an
110 amount of child support.
111 Section 2. Section 61.08, Florida Statutes, is amended to
113 61.08 Alimony.—
114 (1) As used in this section, the term:
115 (a) “Alimony” means a court-ordered or voluntary payment of
116 support by one spouse to the other spouse. The term includes any
117 voluntary payment made after the date of filing of an order for
118 maintenance, spousal support, temporary support, or separate
119 support when the payment is not intended for the benefit of a
120 child in common.
121 (b) “Gross income” means gross income as determined in
122 accordance with s. 61.30.
123 (c) “Net income” means income that is determined by
124 subtracting allowable deductions from gross income. For purposes
125 of this section, allowable deductions include any of the
127 1. Federal, state, or local income tax deductions, adjusted
128 for actual filing status and allowable dependents and income tax
130 2. Federal insurance contributions or self-employment tax.
131 3. Mandatory union dues.
132 4. Mandatory retirement payments.
133 5. Health insurance payments, excluding payments for
134 coverage of a minor child.
135 6. Court-ordered support for other children which is
136 actually paid.
137 7. Spousal support paid pursuant to a court order from a
138 previous marriage.
(1) In a proceeding for dissolution of marriage, the
140 court may grant alimony to either party in the form of , which
141 alimony may be bridge-the-gap, rehabilitative, or durational
142 alimony, or a permanent in nature or any combination of these
143 forms of alimony, but shall prioritize an award of bridge-the
144 gap alimony, followed by rehabilitative alimony, over any other
145 form of alimony. The court may grant permanent alimony only if
146 the parties enter into an agreement for permanent alimony. In an
147 any award of alimony, the court may order periodic payments, or
148 payments in lump sum, or both.
149 (b) The court shall make written findings regarding the
150 basis for awarding a combination of forms of alimony, including
151 the type of alimony and the length of time for which the alimony
152 is awarded. The court may award a combination of forms of
153 alimony only to provide greater economic assistance in order to
154 allow the recipient to achieve rehabilitation.
155 (c) The court may consider the adultery of either spouse
156 and the circumstances thereof in determining the amount of
157 alimony, if any, to be awarded. However, the adultery of a
158 spouse may not be the court’s sole basis for denying a request
159 for alimony or awarding alimony, unless the adultery contributed
160 to a depletion of marital assets. In all dissolution actions,
161 the court shall include written findings of fact relative to the
162 factors provided enumerated in subsection (3) (2) supporting the
163 an award or denial of alimony.
164 (3) (2) In determining whether to award alimony or
165 maintenance, the court shall first make a specific, written
166 factual determination as to whether the other either party has
167 an actual need for alimony or maintenance and whether the other
168 either party has the ability to pay alimony or maintenance. If
169 the court finds that the a party seeking alimony has a need for
170 alimony or maintenance and that the other party has the ability
171 to pay alimony or maintenance, then in determining the proper
172 type and amount of alimony or maintenance under subsections (5),
173 (6), and (7) (5)-(8), the court shall consider all relevant
174 factors, including, but not limited to:
175 (a) The standard of living established during the marriage,
176 including the needs and necessities of life for each party after
177 the dissolution of marriage, taking into consideration the
178 presumption that both parties will have a lower standard of
179 living after the dissolution of marriage than the standard of
180 living they enjoyed during the marriage. This presumption may be
181 overcome by a preponderance of the evidence.
182 (b) The duration of the marriage.
183 (c) The age and the physical and emotional condition of
184 each party.
185 (d) The financial resources of each party, including the
186 nonmarital and the marital assets and liabilities distributed to
188 (e) The earning capacities, educational levels, vocational
189 skills, and employability of the parties and, when applicable,
190 the time necessary for either party to acquire sufficient
191 education or training to enable such party to find appropriate
193 (f) The contribution of each party to the marriage,
194 including, but not limited to, services rendered in homemaking,
195 child care, education, and career building of either the other
197 (g) The responsibilities each party will have with regard
198 to any minor children whom the parties they have in common.
199 (h) The tax treatment and consequences to both parties of
200 an any alimony award , including the designation of all or a
201 portion of the payment as a nontaxable, nondeductible payment.
202 (i) All sources of income available to either party,
203 including income available to either party through investments
204 of any asset held by that party.
205 (j) Any other factor necessary for to do equity and justice
206 between the parties if such factor is specifically identified in
207 the award with findings of fact justifying the application of
208 such factor.
209 (4) (3) To the extent necessary to protect an award of
210 alimony, the obligee may court may order any party who is
211 ordered to pay alimony to purchase or maintain a life insurance
212 policy on the obligor’s life in an amount adequate to or a bond,
213 or to otherwise secure such alimony award with any other assets
214 which may be suitable for that purpose. If the obligee purchases
215 a life insurance policy, the obligor shall cooperate in the
216 process of procuring the issuance and underwriting of the life
217 insurance policy.
218 (4) For purposes of determining alimony, there is a
219 rebuttable presumption that a short-term marriage is a marriage
220 having a duration of less than 7 years, a moderate-term marriage
221 is a marriage having a duration of greater than 7 years but less
222 than 17 years, and long-term marriage is a marriage having a
223 duration of 17 years or greater. The length of a marriage is the
224 period of time from the date of marriage until the date of
225 filing of an action for dissolution of marriage.
226 (5) Bridge-the-gap alimony may be awarded to assist a party
227 by providing support to allow the party to make a transition
228 from being married to being single. Bridge-the-gap alimony is
229 designed to assist a party with legitimate identifiable short
230 term needs, and the length of an award of bridge-the-gap alimony
231 may not exceed 2 years. An award of bridge-the-gap alimony
232 terminates upon the death of either party or upon the remarriage
233 of the party receiving alimony. An award of bridge-the-gap
234 alimony is shall not be modifiable in amount or duration.
235 (6)(a) Rehabilitative alimony may be awarded to assist a
236 party in establishing the capacity for self-support through
238 1. The redevelopment of previous skills or credentials; or
239 2. The acquisition of education, training, or work
240 experience necessary to develop appropriate employment skills or
242 (b) In order to award rehabilitative alimony, there must be
243 a specific and defined rehabilitative plan which shall be
244 included as a part of any order awarding rehabilitative alimony.
245 (c) The length of an award of rehabilitative alimony may
246 not exceed 5 years or the limitations for durational alimony as
247 provided in subsection (7), whichever period of time is shorter.
248 (d) An award of rehabilitative alimony may be modified or
249 terminated in accordance with s. 61.14 based upon a substantial
250 change in circumstances, upon noncompliance with the
251 rehabilitative plan, or upon completion of the rehabilitative
252 plan if the plan is completed before the length of the award of
253 rehabilitative alimony expires.
254 (7)(a) Durational alimony may be awarded when permanent
255 periodic alimony is inappropriate. The purpose of durational
256 alimony is to provide a party with economic assistance for a set
257 period of time following a marriage of short or moderate
258 duration or following a marriage of long duration if there is no
259 ongoing need for support on a permanent basis. An award of
260 durational alimony terminates upon the death of either party or
261 upon the remarriage of the party receiving alimony. The amount
262 of an award of durational alimony may be modified or terminated
263 based upon a substantial change in circumstances or upon a
264 finding that a supportive relationship exists or existed between
265 the obligee and another person in accordance with s. 61.14.
266 However, The length of an award of durational alimony may not be
267 modified except under exceptional circumstances and may not
268 exceed 50 percent of the length of the marriage. For purposes of
269 this subsection, the length of a marriage is the period of time
270 beginning on the date of marriage and ending on the date an
271 action for dissolution of marriage is filed.
272 (b) When awarding durational alimony, the court must make
273 written findings that an award of another type of alimony, or a
274 combination of the other forms of alimony, is not appropriate.
275 (c) The amount of durational alimony is the amount
276 determined to be the obligee’s reasonable need or 25 percent of
277 the difference between the parties’ net incomes, whichever
278 amount is less.
279 (8) A party against whom alimony is sought who has met the
280 requirements for retirement in accordance with s. 61.14(12)
281 before the filing of the petition for dissolution of marriage
282 may not be ordered to pay bridge-the-gap, rehabilitative, or
283 durational alimony, unless the court determines that:
284 (a) The party seeking alimony has not reached the age to
285 qualify for any social security retirement benefits; and
286 (b) As a result of the dissolution of marriage, the party
287 seeking alimony would, based on the income and assets available
288 after the dissolution is final, meet the primary qualifications
289 for the Florida Medicaid medically needy program under part III
290 of chapter 409 and the related rules in effect on March 1, 2020.
291 (9)(a) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, alimony
292 may not be awarded to a party who has a monthly net income that
293 is equal to or more than the other party’s monthly net income.
294 (b) Social security retirement benefits may not be imputed
295 to the obligor as demonstrated by a social security retirement
296 benefits entitlement letter unless those benefits are actually
297 being paid.
298 (c) If the obligee alleges that a physical disability has
299 impaired his or her capability to earn the income imputed by the
300 court, the obligee must have qualified for benefits under the
301 Social Security Administration Disability Insurance Program or,
302 in the event the obligee is not eligible for the program, must
303 demonstrate that his or her disability meets the disability
304 qualification standards of the Social Security Administration
305 Disability Insurance Program.
306 (8) Permanent alimony may be awarded to provide for the
307 needs and necessities of life as they were established during
308 the marriage of the parties for a party who lacks the financial
309 ability to meet his or her needs and necessities of life
310 following a dissolution of marriage. Permanent alimony may be
311 awarded following a marriage of long duration if such an award
312 is appropriate upon consideration of the factors set forth in
313 subsection (2), following a marriage of moderate duration if
314 such an award is appropriate based upon clear and convincing
315 evidence after consideration of the factors set forth in
316 subsection (2), or following a marriage of short duration if
317 there are written findings of exceptional circumstances. In
318 awarding permanent alimony, the court shall include a finding
319 that no other form of alimony is fair and reasonable under the
320 circumstances of the parties. An award of permanent alimony
321 terminates upon the death of either party or upon the remarriage
322 of the party receiving alimony. An award may be modified or
323 terminated based upon a substantial change in circumstances or
324 upon the existence of a supportive relationship in accordance
325 with s. 61.14.
326 (9) The award of alimony may not leave the payor with
327 significantly less net income than the net income of the
328 recipient unless there are written findings of exceptional
330 (10)(a) With respect to any order requiring the payment of
331 alimony entered on or after January 1, 1985, unless the
332 provisions of paragraph (c) or paragraph (d) applies apply, the
333 court shall direct in the order that the payments of alimony be
334 made through the appropriate depository as provided in s.
336 (b) With respect to any order requiring the payment of
337 alimony entered before January 1, 1985, upon the subsequent
338 appearance , on or after that date , of one or both parties before
339 the court having jurisdiction for the purpose of modifying or
340 enforcing the order or in any other proceeding related to the
341 order , or upon the application of either party, unless the
342 provisions of paragraph (c) or paragraph (d) applies apply, the
343 court shall modify the terms of the order as necessary to direct
344 that payments of alimony be made through the appropriate
345 depository as provided in s. 61.181.
346 (c) If there is no minor child, alimony payments need not
347 be directed through the depository.
348 (d)1. If there is a minor child of the parties and both
349 parties so request, the court may order that alimony payments
350 need not be directed through the depository. In this case, the
351 order of support must shall provide, or be deemed to provide,
352 that either party may subsequently apply to the depository to
353 require that payments be made through the depository. The court
354 shall provide a copy of the order to the depository.
355 2. If the provisions of subparagraph 1. applies apply,
356 either party may subsequently file with the depository an
357 affidavit alleging default or arrearages in payment and stating
358 that the party wishes to initiate participation in the
359 depository program. The party shall provide copies of the
360 affidavit to the court and the other party or parties. Fifteen
361 days after receipt of the affidavit, the depository shall notify
362 all parties that future payments shall be directed to the
364 3. In IV-D cases, the IV-D agency has shall have the same
365 rights as the obligee in requesting that payments be made
366 through the depository.
367 (11) The court shall consider any alimony payments made to
368 the obligee after the date of filing of a petition for
369 dissolution of marriage, either voluntarily or pursuant to a
370 court order, in determining the amount and length of an award of
371 rehabilitative or durational alimony.
372 (12) The court shall apply this section to all petitions
373 for dissolution of marriage which have not been adjudicated
374 before July 1, 2021, cases pending on appeal, and to any
375 petitions for dissolution of marriage filed on or after July 1,
377 Section 3. Paragraph (c) of subsection (2) of section
378 61.13, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
379 61.13 Support of children; parenting and time-sharing;
380 powers of court.—
382 (c) The court shall determine all matters relating to
383 parenting and time-sharing of each minor child of the parties in
384 accordance with the best interests of the child and in
385 accordance with the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and
386 Enforcement Act, except that modification of a parenting plan
387 and time-sharing schedule requires a showing of a substantial,
388 material, and unanticipated change of circumstances.
389 1. It is the public policy of this state that each minor
390 child has frequent and continuing contact with both parents
391 after the parents separate or the marriage of the parties is
392 dissolved and to encourage parents to share the rights and
393 responsibilities, and joys, of childrearing. Unless otherwise
394 agreed to by the parties, there is a presumption that equal
395 time-sharing is in the best interests of a minor child common to
396 both parties. This subparagraph applies to all actions filed on
397 or after July 1, 2021 There is no presumption for or against the
398 father or mother of the child or for or against any specific
399 time-sharing schedule when creating or modifying the parenting
400 plan of the child.
401 2. The court shall order that the parental responsibility
402 for a minor child be shared by both parents unless the court
403 finds that shared parental responsibility would be detrimental
404 to the child. Evidence that a parent has been convicted of a
405 misdemeanor of the first degree or higher involving domestic
406 violence, as defined in s. 741.28 and chapter 775, or meets the
407 criteria of s. 39.806(1)(d), creates a rebuttable presumption of
408 detriment to the child. If the presumption is not rebutted after
409 the convicted parent is advised by the court that the
410 presumption exists, shared parental responsibility, including
411 time-sharing with the child, and decisions made regarding the
412 child, may not be granted to the convicted parent. However, the
413 convicted parent is not relieved of any obligation to provide
414 financial support. If the court determines that shared parental
415 responsibility would be detrimental to the child, it may order
416 sole parental responsibility and make such arrangements for
417 time-sharing as specified in the parenting plan as will best
418 protect the child or abused spouse from further harm. Regardless
419 of whether or not there is a conviction of any offense of
420 domestic violence or child abuse or the existence of an
421 injunction for protection against domestic violence, the court
422 shall consider evidence of domestic violence or child abuse as
423 evidence of detriment to the child.
424 a. In ordering shared parental responsibility, the court
425 may consider the expressed desires of the parents and may grant
426 to one party the ultimate responsibility over specific aspects
427 of the child’s welfare or may divide those responsibilities
428 between the parties based on the best interests of the child.
429 Areas of responsibility may include education, health care, and
430 any other responsibilities that the court finds unique to a
431 particular family.
432 b. The court shall order sole parental responsibility for a
433 minor child to one parent, with or without time-sharing with the
434 other parent if it is in the best interests of the minor child.
435 3. Access to records and information pertaining to a minor
436 child, including, but not limited to, medical, dental, and
437 school records, may not be denied to either parent. Full rights
438 under this subparagraph apply to either parent unless a court
439 order specifically revokes these rights, including any
440 restrictions on these rights as provided in a domestic violence
441 injunction. A parent having rights under this subparagraph has
442 the same rights upon request as to form, substance, and manner
443 of access as are available to the other parent of a child,
444 including, without limitation, the right to in-person
445 communication with medical, dental, and education providers.
446 Section 4. Paragraph (b) of subsection (1) of section
447 61.14, Florida Statutes, is amended, and paragraph (c) is added
448 to subsection (11) and subsections (12), (13), and (14) are
449 added to that section, to read:
450 61.14 Enforcement and modification of support, maintenance,
451 or alimony agreements or orders.—
453 (b)1. The court may reduce or terminate an award of alimony
454 or order reimbursement to the obligor for any amount the court
455 determines is equitable upon specific written findings by the
456 court that since the granting of a divorce and the award of
457 alimony, a supportive relationship exists or has existed between
458 the obligee and another a person at any time during the 180 days
459 before the filing of a petition for modification of alimony with
460 whom the obligee resides. On the issue of whether alimony should
461 be reduced or terminated under this paragraph, the burden is on
462 the obligor to prove by a preponderance of the evidence that a
463 supportive relationship exists or existed.
464 2. In determining whether an existing award of alimony
465 should be reduced or terminated because of an alleged supportive
466 relationship between an obligee and a person who is not related
467 by consanguinity or affinity and with whom the obligee resides,
468 the court shall elicit the nature and extent of the relationship
469 in question. The court shall give consideration, without
470 limitation, to circumstances, including, but not limited to, the
471 following, in determining the relationship of an obligee to
472 another person:
473 a. The extent to which the obligee and the other person
474 have held themselves out as a married couple by engaging in
475 conduct such as using the same last name, using a common mailing
476 address, referring to each other in terms such as “my husband,”
477 or “my wife,” “my partner,” or “my fiance” or otherwise
478 conducting themselves in a manner that evidences a permanent or
479 longstanding committed and supportive relationship.
480 b. The period of time that the obligee has resided with the
481 other person in a permanent place of abode.
482 c. The extent to which the obligee and the other person
483 have pooled their assets or income or otherwise exhibited
484 financial interdependence.
485 d. The extent to which the obligee or the other person has
486 supported the other, in whole or in part.
487 e. The extent to which the obligee or the other person has
488 performed valuable services for the other.
489 f. The extent to which the obligee or the other person has
490 performed valuable services for the other’s company or employer.
491 g. Whether the obligee and the other person have worked
492 together to create or enhance anything of value.
493 h. Whether the obligee and the other person have jointly
494 contributed to the purchase of any real or personal property.
495 i. Evidence in support of a claim that the obligee and the
496 other person have an express agreement regarding property
497 sharing or support.
498 j. Evidence in support of a claim that the obligee and the
499 other person have an implied agreement regarding property
500 sharing or support.
501 k. Whether the obligee and the other person have provided
502 support to the children of one another, regardless of any legal
503 duty to do so.
504 l. Whether the obligee and the other person are engaged to
505 be married.
506 3. This paragraph does not abrogate the requirement that
507 every marriage in this state be solemnized under a license, does
508 not recognize a common law marriage as valid, and does not
509 recognize a de facto marriage. This paragraph recognizes only
510 that relationships do exist that provide economic support
511 equivalent to a marriage and that alimony terminable on
512 remarriage may be reduced or terminated upon the establishment
513 of equivalent equitable circumstances as described in this
514 paragraph. The existence of a conjugal relationship, though it
515 may be relevant to the nature and extent of the relationship, is
516 not necessary for the application of the provisions of this
519 (c) An obligor’s subsequent remarriage or cohabitation does
520 not constitute a basis for either party to seek a modification
521 of an alimony award. An obligee may not seek modification to
522 increase an award of alimony based on the income and assets of
523 the obligor’s subsequent spouse or person with whom the obligor
524 resides, and the obligor may not seek modification to reduce an
525 award of alimony based on the obligor’s reliance upon the income
526 and assets of the obligor’s subsequent spouse or person with
527 whom the obligor resides.
528 (12)(a) An alimony award terminates when the obligor
529 reaches full retirement age as determined by the United States
530 Social Security Administration. However, if an obligor reaches
531 full retirement age as determined by the United States Social
532 Security Administration but has not paid durational alimony for
533 a period equal to 50 percent of the length of the marriage, the
534 court may require the obligor to continue to pay durational
535 alimony, not to exceed 50 percent of the length of the marriage,
536 only if the court determines that:
537 1. The party seeking alimony has not reached the minimum
538 age to qualify for social security retirement benefits; and
539 2. As a result of the dissolution of marriage or the
540 termination of alimony payments under this paragraph, the party
541 seeking alimony would, based on the income and assets available
542 after the dissolution of marriage is final, meet the primary
543 qualifications for the Florida Medicaid medically needy program
544 under part III of chapter 409 and the related rules in effect on
545 March 1, 2020.
546 (b) If an obligor seeks to retire at an age that is
547 reasonable for his or her profession or line of work, but before
548 he or she reaches full retirement age as determined by the
549 United States Social Security Administration, the court may
550 terminate an alimony award if it determines that the obligor’s
551 retirement is reasonable. In determining whether the obligor’s
552 retirement is reasonable, the court shall consider all of the
554 1. The obligor’s age and health.
555 2. The obligor’s motivation for retirement.
556 3. The obligor’s profession or line of work and the typical
557 retirement age for that profession or line of work.
558 4. The obligee’s needs and necessities of life and the
559 obligor’s needs and necessities of life.
560 5. The impact that a termination or reduction of alimony
561 would have on the obligee. In determining the impact, the court
562 must consider any assets accumulated or received by the obligee,
563 including any income generated by such assets, since the final
564 judgment of dissolution of marriage.
565 (c) Up to 12 months before the obligor’s anticipated
566 retirement under paragraph (a) or paragraph (b), the obligor may
567 file a petition to modify or terminate the alimony award,
568 effective upon his or her actual retirement date. The court
569 shall modify or terminate the alimony award after the obligor’s
570 retirement unless the court makes written findings of fact under
571 paragraph (b) that the obligor’s retirement is not reasonable.
572 (13) Any amount of social security or disability benefits
573 or retirement payments received by an obligee subsequent to an
574 initial award of alimony constitutes a change in circumstances
575 for which an obligor may seek modification of an alimony award.
576 (14)(a) Agreements on alimony payments, voluntary or
577 pursuant to a court order, which allow for modification or
578 termination of alimony by virtue of either party reaching a
579 certain age, income, or other threshold, or agreements that
580 establish a limited period of time after which alimony is
581 modifiable, are considered agreements that are expressly
582 modifiable or eligible for termination for purposes of this
583 section once the specified condition is met.
584 (b) The court shall apply this section to any action to
585 modify or terminate an alimony award filed on or after July 1,
586 2021, or any action for which a final order has not been issued
587 or an appeal to a district court of appeal has not been decided
588 before July 1, 2021.
589 Section 5. Section 61.19, Florida Statutes, is amended to
591 61.19 Entry of judgment of dissolution of marriage; , delay
592 period; separate adjudication of issues.—
593 (1) A No final judgment of dissolution of marriage may not
594 be entered until at least 20 days have elapsed from the date of
595 filing the original petition for dissolution of marriage, ; but
596 the court, on a showing that injustice would result from this
597 delay, may enter a final judgment of dissolution of marriage at
598 an earlier date.
599 (2) If more than 365 days have elapsed after the date of
600 service of the original petition for dissolution of marriage,
601 absent a showing by either party that irreparable harm will
602 result from granting a final judgment of dissolution of
603 marriage, the court shall, upon request of either party, grant a
604 final judgment of dissolution of marriage with a reservation of
605 jurisdiction to subsequently determine all other substantive
606 issues. Before granting the judgment, the court shall enter
607 temporary orders necessary to protect the parties and their
608 children, which orders remain effective until all other issues
609 can be adjudicated by the court. This subsection applies to all
610 petitions for dissolution of marriage filed on or after July 1,
612 Section 6. This act shall take effect July 1, 2021.