COVID-19 Information

In light of COVID-19, Matthew Lane & Associates will be able to meet with new clients via Zoom. To discuss your options, please call the office. Thank you!
Matthew Lane & Associates, P.A.
Palm Beach Gardens, Wellington, Boca Raton, West Palm Beach (561) 328-1111

Alimony in Wellington, Florida

In calculating alimony, income received by the alimony recipient from retirement accounts (such as 401ks) is considered in determining the alimony recipient's need where principal in these retirement accounts will not be invaded for purposes of support. In a case captioned Stoltzfus v. Stoltzfus, the Florida Court of Appeal recently had before it a case in which the husband challenged the trial court's award of alimony. The husband's challenge was based upon the amount of alimony that the trial court awarded to his wife. The wife also cross-appealed based upon the amount of alimony that she was awarded. The husband alleged that the lower court failed to take into account income that the wife received from her retirement accounts in determining the wife's need for alimony. The husband pointed out that the wife received income from two 40 IK accounts that wife received as part of the equitable distribution of the parties' assets. The trial court had found that the 40 IKs were generating income , but found that the wife was not be able to receive that income until she was sixty-five.

The Florida alimony statute defines income to include salaries, bonuses, commissions, earnings as independent contractors, disability benefits, annuity and retirement benefits, worker's compensation benefits, interest, dividends, benefits from annuities, income from trusts, and any other payments received, with the exception of disability benefits paid by United States Department of Veterans Affairs and unemployment compensation and reemployment assistance as set forth in Chapter 443. The Court of Appeal held that retirement accounts distributed to an alimony recipient which yield income to that party should be considered income to the recipient for purposes of determining the recipient's need for alimony where the principal of the account will not be needed to be invaded for the purpose of the recipient's support. Furthermore, a court may impute income based on a reasonable rate of return from retirement account. The Court of Appeal found that the trial court erred when it failed to consider interest income from the wife's 401Ks in determining alimony for the wife. Additionally, the Court of Appeal found that the trial court erred in awarding alimony to the wife based upon her annual expenses without support for these expenses in the record. Accordingly, the Court reversed the trial court's ruling.

If you have questions or you would like to speak with a divorce attorney in Wellington, Florida, contact Matthew Lane & Associates, P.A. at (561) 651-7273.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Email Us For A Response

Palm Beach Gardens Office
The Financial Center at the Gardens
3801 PGA Boulevard
Suite 600
Palm Beach Gardens, Florida 33410

Toll Free: (800) 411-3434
Phone: (561) 328-1111
Palm Beach Gardens Office

Wellington Office
Wellington Reserve
1035 South State Road 7
Suite 315
Wellington, Florida 33414

Toll Free: (800) 411-3434
Phone: (561) 328-1111
Wellington Family Law Office

West Palm Beach Office
Phillips Point
777 South Flagler Drive
Suite 800
West Palm Beach, Florida 33401

Toll Free: (800) 411-3434
Phone: (561) 328-1111
West Palm Beach Family Law Office

Boca Raton Office
One Boca Place
2255 Glades Road
Suite 324A
Boca Raton, Florida 33431

Toll Free: (800) 411-3434
Phone: (561) 328-1111
Boca Raton Office