TAVARAS, Fla., Dec. 13, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Florida Alimony reform advocates have secured the support of two state lawmakers, and with their help will return to Tallahassee during the upcoming legislative session that begins in March to secure passage of the organization's bill to overhaul the state's alimony laws.
Rep. Ritch Workman (R-Melbourne), has agreed to be the House sponsor, finishing what he began last year when HB549 overwhelming passed by a nearly 3-to-1 margin. Workman, chairman of the Finance and Tax Subcommittee, was first elected to the Florida House of Representatives in 2008.
"This is not an anti-alimony, anti-spouse or anti-woman bill. This is a bill that simply clarifies and codifies the law to make sure alimony is fair to all involved," said Workman. "I don't hate alimony. I hate the abuse of it and this bill prohibits the abuse of it," he said.
Sen. Kelli Stargel (R-Lakeland) is taking up the charge in the state Senate. Stargel served as a state representative from 2008 to 2012 before winning her Senate seat. Last year, Florida Alimony Reform's bill never made it out of committee in the Senate and was never brought to the floor for a vote.
"Florida's alimony system is an important framework for many of our families. However, it must be fair and equitable for all parties involved. I look forward to working with interested groups and individuals to ensure we pass a meaningful bill this legislative session," Stargel said.
Florida Alimony Reform continues to pursue six key areas:
- Removal of permanent alimony from present statutes.
- The need for alimony payer to have the right to retire at Federal Retirement age or standard retirement age for 'high risk' professions.
- A defined amount based on a formula that is fair, and averages incomes for both spouses.
- Second Wives' or husbands' income shall not be used to calculate an upward modification of alimony.
- Attaching a 'decreasing term' life insurance policy instead of a term, or whole life policy to the alimony payment so that insurance is affordable and ends when the alimony payment ends.
- Make the law retroactive so that those saddled with alimony payments can get payments modified to comply with the new law.
"Our goal is to make sure permanent alimony is a thing of the past," said FAR co-director and Spokesman Alan Frisher. "While we agree long-term alimony may be necessary under certain situations, we are willing to compromise for the amount with the creation of a formula that is fair, and will take into consideration several factors, including how long a marriage lasted. We must also allow current alimony payers to be able to modify their orders under the new law."
Founded in 2010, Florida Alimony Reform was created to change the state's antiquated alimony laws. Based in Tavaras, Fla., FAR represents more than 2,000 families across the state.
The Florida Alimony Reform logo is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=11350
Source: Florida Alimony Reform