Florida Lifetime Alimony Payers to Testify at Senate Hearing - Tuesday Jan. 31 in Tallahassee

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| Source: Family Law Reform, Inc.

TAVARES, Fla., Jan. 27, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- As the Florida legislature considers proposals to update the state's antiquated lifetime alimony laws, a group of citizens, members of Florida Alimony Reform (FAR), intends to offer testimony in support of the new legislation next week. Members of FAR, the nation's leading grassroots organization supporting reform, will travel to the capitol to describe the hardships that lifetime alimony imposes on them and their families when the Senate Judiciary Committee holds hearings on Tuesday, Jan 31, at 3:30, in 110 Senate House Office Building. The bill, SB 748, introduced last fall by Miami-Dade's Senator Miguel Diaz de la Portilla, is identical to HB 549, introduced by Brevard County's Rep. Ritch Workman.

"We are thrilled to have the chance to present our cases to the Judiciary Committee," says Alan Frisher, FAR's co-director and spokesman, who is a Licensed Financial Advisor and Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA), and was ordered, eight years ago, to pay lifetime alimony after a 13-year marriage. "When we presented testimony in December in the House Civil Justice Subcommittee, legislators were deeply moved by our stories and several changed their 'no' votes to 'yes' votes. The committee voted in favor of the bill ten to two."

Frisher notes that national media have recently begun covering the issue of reform, with recent shows and articles on Anderson Cooper's show "Anderson," on "Fox and Friends," and in USA Today. The reform movement began in Massachusetts and has spread to Florida, New Jersey, Connecticut, and elsewhere.

Although Frisher's payments ended recently after a settlement with his ex-wife, whose net income is almost as much as his, he champions the cause of reform for the thousands of lifetime payers who have no guarantee of lowered payments after retirement, who have difficulties getting payments reduced because of job loss and disability, who often cannot afford lawyers for return trips to court, and who are regularly faced with bankruptcy, foreclosure, insolvency, and sometimes jail, for inability to make alimony payments.

While SB 748/HB 549 as originally drafted bills may change as they progress from Committee to Committee, FAR is working to insure that the final bill will:

  • limit the amount and the length of alimony awards;
  • change standards for proving cohabitation, so alimony recipients who cohabit instead of marrying, for fear of losing the alimony, will have alimony reduced or ended.
  • establish the right of payers to retire at Federal retirement age (currently 66 y. o.) and end payments in most cases.
  • exclude income and assets from second spouses in alimony modifications. Currently, if alimony payers remarry, their new spouses' resources can be considered part of the household income from which alimony is determined.
  • allow those currently paying abusive amounts of alimony the right to return to court for reconsideration under the new law.

For more on FAR's efforts to update antiquated laws, visit http://www.floridaalimonyreform.com.

The Florida Alimony Reform logo is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=11350

Alan Frisher

352-577-5706