Understanding alimony: Standard of living

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“Standard of living” is a legal term that refers to the lifestyle to which two parties become accustomed to over the course of their marriage, in terms of the luxuries, comforts and necessities they enjoyed within that time. Establishing standard of living is an important task for any Miami divorce lawyer, as it is one of the most heavily weighted determining factors that a court considers in an alimony judgment.

Both parties who are seeking spousal support and those who wish to prove it unnecessary stand to benefit from learning more about this term, and how it is actually deduced in a divorce proceeding.

As Forbes explains, this process of establishing standard of living in a marriage typically involves tallying the everyday living expenses of both spouses, which can include food, clothing and other routine household items. Longstanding expenses, such as car payments, rent or mortgage fees and monthly utilities also factor into the overall picture of a couple’s standard of living.Seasonal or other non-recurring expenses, which may include holiday vacations and gift expenditures, may also be cited to illustrate the standard of living enjoyed during a marriage. In addition, records of the personal spending habits of both spouses may also be reviewed in court.

If the court finds that a party has a need for ongoing support, and that the other individual involved has the means to make such payments, standard of living is one of many factors that can dictate the amount and duration of an award.

For guidance regarding the intricacies of Florida divorce proceedings, a knowledgeable Miami family lawyer is an invaluable asset. Scott A. Ferris, Esq. has practiced law in this field for 25 years, and can help you fight for the support you are legally due or challenge an unjust demand on your income.

This article is part of an ongoing series on alimony law.