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How Soon Can I Start Receiving Alimony?


If you are at least partly financially dependent upon your spouse and are going through a divorce, you may be wondering how soon you can start collecting alimony. The answer to this question will differ depending on the circumstances of the case at hand, but it is often possible for a person to start receiving alimony, at least on a temporary basis, almost immediately. To learn more about temporary alimony, including whether you could qualify for payments, please reach out to our experienced Fort Lauderdale alimony attorneys today.

Temporary Alimony

In addition to the four main types of alimony, Florida courts also often award a fifth type of spousal maintenance, known as temporary alimony. Unlike the other forms of alimony, temporary alimony is not awarded at the conclusion of a divorce, but at the beginning of divorce proceedings. This is because temporary alimony is intended to provide financial support for a spouse during the period of time between the initiation and the conclusion of the divorce proceedings, which can last for many months, or even years. In fact, a person could even be entitled to temporary alimony even if he or she is not ultimately awarded spousal maintenance as part of the final divorce order.

Requesting Temporary Alimony

To obtain alimony on a temporary basis, a party will need to file a motion requesting an award at some point following the filing of the divorce petition. Either spouse has the option of making this request, regardless of who actually filed for divorce. In either case, the petitioner will need to provide evidence as to the need for temporary alimony. Before granting such a request, a judge will consider a number of different factors, including:

  • The standard of living enjoyed by the couple prior to the divorce filing;
  • The petitioner’s financial needs;
  • The other spouse’s own financial needs and ability to pay; and
  • The length of the marriage.

The other party to the divorce proceeding has the option of filing a reply to the petitioner’s request, which the court would also assess before issuing an award of temporary alimony. In limited circumstances, petitioners can request temporary alimony without his or her spouse present in court, but this is usually only applicable in cases where there is a threat of domestic violence.

How Long Does Temporary Alimony Last?

If a judge decides to award temporary alimony to help the petitioner cover expenses during the pendency of the divorce, he or she should begin receiving payments immediately. The award will typically remain in place until the finalization of the divorce, at which time, any other form of alimony would go into effect.

Legal Help in Your Florida Divorce

Whether you are still considering divorce or are already involved in litigation, you could benefit from the advice of an attorney, especially if you are requesting temporary alimony. Call our office today to learn more about your options from Florida alimony lawyer Sandra Bonfiglio, P.A. Initial consultations are offered free of charge, so don’t hesitate to reach out to us by phone at 954-945-7591 or online message.



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