Florida Legal Information - Steven deLaroche
Frequently Asked Questions - Family Law in Florida

Criminal Defense, Business Law, and Family Law from an experienced attorney in Daytona Beach, contact Steven deLaroche, Attorney at Law at 386-947-0909.

New Florida Alimony Laws Passed in 2023

Florida Divorce laws changed in July 2023. One of the biggest changes is that permanent alimony has been eliminated. The new law only applies to divorces filed on or after July 1, 2023. It cannot be used for divorces that were already filed before that date.

There are now only four types of alimony in Florida which are:

  • Temporary alimony – A judge can award temporary alimony when a couple has separated, but has not yet divorced. The judge can also award temporary alimony if the divorce is not yet finalized through the court system. You can appeal the award of temporary alimony while the divorce is pending.
  • Bridge-the-gap alimony – This type of alimony can be awarded for a set time period not to exceed 2 years. Once awarded the amount and time can not be modified.
  • Rehabilitative alimony – The length of this type of alimony cannot exceed 5 years. But, it can be modified or terminated based on certain circumstances.
  • Durational alimony – This type of alimony allows for economic assistance for a set period based on the circumstances of the marriage. But, it cannot be awarded for marriages of less than 3 years.
Many circumstances affect the amount and length of alimony that can be awarded. You should seek out a competent family law attorney who has knowledge of Florida divorce laws to protect your rights.

Choosing Steven deLaroche as your Daytona Beach Divorce Attorney

There are lots of Daytona Beach Divorce Attorneys. Steven deLaroche has been practicing Family Law for over 30 years. It's an emotional time in your life and you will get through it. Steven and his staff has handled issues including child custody agreements, alimony payments, and division of property. 

For example, will you need alimony while your divorce is in progress? How about where your spouse will live during the divorce? And, are you worried about custody and visitation rights with the children?

Let us take on your concerns and worries. We've done this hundreds of times for other Daytona residents going through the same thing you are. Call our office at 386-947-0909 and schedule an appointment.

What are the divorce laws in Florida?

The state of Florida will only grant a divorce if one of two conditions are met:

  • The marriage is irretrievably broken, or
  • One of the parties is mentally incapacitated
The court will hold a hearing to determine there are no minor children from the marriage and that your spouse does not deny the marriage is irretrievably broken. If so, then the court will place a petition for dissolution of the marriage.

If there are minor children or your spouse denies that the marriage is irretrievably broken, then there are other steps that need to be taken.

If there are minor children involved then Florida divorce laws require you and your spouse to complete a 4-hour Parent Education and Family Stabilization Class. The class is available on-line.

Do I really need a Florida divorce lawyer?

Whether you need a lawyer to handle your divorce depends on a lot of factors. If you have minor children, how will they be provided for, now and in the future? Is there a significant difference in your income? But, the biggest factor is how well you can advocate for yourself without being 'the bad guy'.

Hiring a divorce attorney can take a lot of emotion out of the process. Rather than having heated arguments with your future ex-spouse, I deal with their lawyer. I become your advocate. I fight for your rights and your financial future.

If you have complete agreement with your future ex-spouse on division of your assets, child support, and spousal support, then you may not need an attorney. But, if there are any differences of opinion on these issues, a good divorce attorney can help keep the process civil and protect your rights.

Do I need a lawyer for a divorce?

You are not required to have an attorney to get a divorce in Florida. In fact, Florida has what is known as a 'Simplified Dissolution of Marriage'. It can be completed in as little as 30 days, but, it does have conditions and there are different forms you'll need depending on your situation, such as:

  • You have children under 18
  • The wife is pregnant
  • Anyone is going to pay alimony
  • You own property together
  • If there is any disagreement on the terms of the divorce 

Plus, at least one of the parties has to have lived in Florida for the past six months. If you meet the necessary conditions you can get the forms for a Simplified Dissolution of Marriage at the Florida State Court website. However, if there are any special circumstances such as your spouse being in the military or living out of state, this process can get significantly more complicated.

There are a couple of important things you need to understand if you go this route.

  • You are waiving your rights to a trial and to any appeals in the future
  • The judge and clerk can not give you any legal advice on completing the paperwork
  • Once you submit the forms they can not be changed, so be accurate.
  • You have to complete and file the paperwork, including notices to your spouse, affidavits, and disclosure forms

Alimony Laws in Florida

Alimony is always an important question when considering divorce. Alimony in Florida is not always automatic and it does not necessarily go on forever. The amount, length of time, and who pays who, depends on many factors.

Florida law actually provides for five different types of alimony:

  • Temporary Alimony - paid only during the divorce process
  • Bridge-the-gap Alimony - paid after the divorce is final but for a fixed-term of 2 years of less
  • Rehabilitative Alimony - paid for an ex spouse's education or job training
  • Durational Alimony - paid for a fixed time of the number of years of marriage or less.
  • Permanent Alimony - paid if no other form of alimony is fair or reasonable.

The type and amount of alimony determined by the judge depends on both need and ability to pay. When preparing a request for alimony it's critical to document all the income sources of your spouse, all investments you have jointly or individually, expenses that you will have after the divorce, property that may have been owned before the marriage, education plans, tax consequences, any children and who is paying the expenses of those children.

Florida alimony law also depends on the length of the marriage. The rules of alimony and the payments will change if the marriage was less than 7 years, or more than 17 years.

Choosing a divorce attorney is important to protect your financial future. Choose an attorney who understands the divorce laws in Florida.

How a Domestic Violence Case works in Florida

If you, or someone you know, are involved in a domestic violence situation the legal process can be daunting. In Florida, there is a clearly defined process to help protect you. The first step is filing a petition with the court which a judge will review. They can then issue a temporary injunction within 24 hours.

Depending on the circumstances, and the documentation provided, they may extend the injunction or schedule a hearing to be held within 15 days.

At DeLaroche Law, we are here to help in dealing with this complex issue. Please call us today at 386-947-0909 for your free consultation. We have your best interests at heart!

What is Domestic Abuse?

Domestic abuse is an act of violence, or stalking committed against a person whom the abuser has a close relationship. Generally family members, spouses, and boyfriend/ girlfriends qualify under the classification of domestic abuse. Abuse may also be verbal or emotional. Words can as destructive as physical abuse. Victims are often told they are stupid, worthless, can’t do anything right, or that no one else will ever love them. Remember, it is never your fault when you are the victim of domestic abuse. To stop the pattern of abuse, you must change the situation. A Domestic Abuse Injunction ( Fl Stat. 741.30) removes the abuser from the picture.

Men are not immune to domestic abuse, although at a much lower rate than women. If you are being threatened or abused in an intimate relationship, especially if you live with the one committing the abuse, you need a plan. Get safe, get an injunction.

 An excellent resource is The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV). Go to this site when you are away from the abuser; at the library, the home of a trusted friend or family member; anywhere that you will not be surprised or discovered by the abuser. There are details explaining most abuse situations, including specific steps for planning a safe place to go if the situation escalates and you fear for you or your children’s safety – or lives.

You must never treat abuse lightly. Domestic abuse is all about power and control, and the abuser will probably never stop. But there is help. Always remember you don’t have to do this on your own. Visit the National Domestic Violence website at http://www.thehotline.org/help, or call them at (800-799-SAFE (800-799-7233) from a safe place. You can also call the 24-hour Crisis Line at the Domestic Abuse Council of Volusia County, 1-800-500-1119 or visit their website at http://www.domesticabusecouncil.com/.

One of the most important things you can do is to talk to a domestic abuse attorney and ask questions. Our consultations are free. The NCADV is has a page that includes Seeking Legal Assistance - Questions to Ask an Attorney up Front.

At DeLaroche Law, we are here to help with our years of experience in dealing with this complex issue. Please call us today at 386-947-0909 for your free consultation. We have your best interests at heart!

Experienced Family Law Attorney Serving Central Florida

While it is a very emotional area of practice, family law is about more than the difficult emotions you are experiencing. It also involves a variety of important legal issues that must be taken care of so everyone involved is able to move on with their lives. If you are dealing with these issues, an experienced attorney can help you resolve them in a favorable manner.

As the old saying goes, there's more than one way to skin a cat. The same holds true for divorce and family law. I am well versed in achieving divorce settlements and have extensive experience taking these cases to trial. Regardless of what is necessary to resolve your case in a way that protects your rights, you can trust me to look out for your interests inside and outside of the courtroom.