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Two dozen women urge Scott to veto alimony bill


AlimonyGov. Rick Scott has less than a week to sign or veto the controversial alimony bill.

On Friday, two dozen women urged him to dust off his veto pen.

"If the governor wants to look pro-family, he should definitely veto this bill," said women's rights activist Barbara DeVane.

SB 718 would put an end to permanent alimony, and require judges to split custody evenly between divorcing parents, unless one parent could make a convincing case otherwise.

Maria Gonzalez, a Broward-based family law attorney, said the proposal would likely be found unconstitutional because some of its provisions are retroactive.

"A new bill could not and should not be permitted to undo contract rights," Gonzalez said.

Also attending Friday's rally: Simone Kay, a 22-year-old honors student at Florida State University. As a child of divorced parents, Kay said the proposed legislation hit "close to home."

"Every aspect of this bill is incredibly wrong," she said. "I'm truly concerned about the children. The 50-50 time share could put a lot of people at risk."

At a press conference earlier this week, Sen. Kelli Stargel, R-Lakeland, reminded reporters that the alimony bill had passed by a "supermajority" in both chambers. Would there still be enough support to override a potential veto? Stay tuned.

Comments

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Trey Powers

SB 718 would put an end to permanent alimony..... that's why they want it vetoed. go get a job.....

Heidi Fermer

SB 718 puts children at risk, particularly children where one parent is wealthy and one is not. The wingnuts running around talking about "go get a job" are only those who have this confused with welfare and would do well to get educated.

Furthermore, SB 718 contains elements that are unconstitutional and will be thrown out of court (as were segregation laws). Sadly this will tie up Judges, family court, and make lawyers very wealthy.

At the end of the day, the Gov may well succumb to the wealthy minority that made themselves look like the majority, and for years this will increase the numbers on welfare and the child abuse cases. Its almost funny, if not for being so sad, as those who blindly support this, for the most part, will bare a tremendous tax burden as a result, and at worst, might find the streets with many more homeless (which means more criminals breaking into the very wealthy's homes). Very very short sighted for people who say they are educated.

Or, perhaps in the face of justice, Gov Scott will take the lead from SCOTUS Chief Justice Roberts and do what is RIGHT. We can only hope.

Bob S.

The subject matter of this article is so full of inaccuracies, falsehoods, and demagoguery, that it hardly merits serious consideration. However single men who have never been married take notice. Marriage is NOT an option for you. The biggest mistake you will ever make is signing your name to a state marriage license as it is a complete waiver of your rights nad binds you contractually to the state. Which is more or less the devil.

Bob S.

So, opponents of this legislation want to call it "anti-woman". To ignorant people this may sound quite reasonable. However, to those who have had their lives destroyed my current law and are fully cognizant of its ramifications, not passing reform is "anti-human". In other words, current law is inhumane.

Jean

I am outraged and sad at the fact that this bill has even gotten this far! For years we have been trying to protect our children and now in these times we would go backwards in time and not stand up for the rights and the welfare of the most precious beings, our own kids! Do you really want to see mothers and children living in the streets? Is the alimony payer the most important thing to protect or is it your child? Since when should money come before your child! Shame on anyone who has taken any part in voting this bill into law!!! This is the most cruel and insane thing I have ever heard of!!! Lets be human beings here! Money is not evertthing!! Your child is!!!! Govenor Scott, stand up for the helpless children and please for there sake, please VETO this bill!!!! Its a no brainer! It is WRONG on all counts!!!

Rob Porter

The governor does not have to sign or veto this bill. He can merely allow it to pass into law with no signature. this whole debate about him HAVING to sign or veto is not true. He can avoid the entire debate and allow woman or men to blame their congressmen. They dont have to blame the governor for their unhappiness with the bill that was passed and heavily favored by both the Florida Senate and the Florida House. There are actually more women in favor of this bill than there are against.

Bob S.

Texas does not have permanent alimony and there are not women and children living in the streets. As a matter of fact, divorced women in Texas have learned to be adults and assumed responsibility for themselves.

Binders Full Of Women

Rick Scott fired the top woman in his office Jennifer Carol. He has a problem with women. Most of them don't like him.

Laurie Detrick

After 31 1/2 years of marriage and working hard to put my husband in the position of earning a HUGE salary, in excess of my wildest dreams, and the idea that at 53 years old-that I should go get a job after not working for 17 years and knowing that I will enter the system back at beginning teacher salary is simply wrong!!! When I helped put my husband through law school, LLM school,done everything to support and elevate him in front and behind the scenes-socially, as well as financially, and he looks to enter the political realm-I put my life and career on hold for what we agreed was the desire of both of us. What woman in the future will want to put their family and husband over their own career? The propossed bill only helps the wealthy spouse keep what the two spouses earned together. Maybe the wealthy spouse would like to go back to ground zero along with the other spouse when they enter the divorce realm. I heard and watched wives get left for younger models and didn't feel that it would happen to me-you never know a person until you KNOW a person! A person who spent more time on the road to elevate his professional career, his political aspirations, and to be somebody to everyone outside of his family, while topping a salary 200 times a year more than what we started with should not be allowed to walk away from the financial obligations of his wife and children. If we go with the 50-50 custody (which is also wrong) then half the time the kids will live with the Disney Land Dad, and half the time they will live with the Mother who is trying to be sure there is enough money to get by- because of these new changes. Who would want to get married-what are we teaching our children-money is more important than a family and honoring a committment? Another thing is if the spouse getting alimony gets remarried the alimony stops-does that mean that I should only look for a spouse who will have money-if I had been working for the length of the marriage I would be in a job and able to make more money to take to earn while in my new marriage. While it is no penalty for the alimony giver to remarry either up or down financially with no change to his living condidtions. Divorce is awful for everyone-the kids will gets the worst 50-50 or limbo while we spend time and money in the courts, and at a great cost to a spouse too. VETO this--it is wrong on so many counts. Doing nothing and allowing it to pass is not ok either!!! Pick up the pen and VETO this!!!

Just Asking

Does Rick Scott really use Lysol after being next to women and minorities?

Lorena

Governor Rick Scott, Executive Office of the Governor of the State of FloridaI am writing you to ask you to veto SB 718 and HB 231, legislation that seeks to change Florida law and mandate a presumption that children throughout the state spend an equal number of overnights with each parent after a divorce or paternity action regardless of the needs and developmental stages of children and the circumstances of that particular family; reduce the length and amount of all future alimony awards absent special circumstances; eliminate permanent alimony; create a presumption of no alimony in every marriage of less than 10 years duration and allow a retroactive termination or reduction of existing alimony awards and agreements based on the bills even though the Senate Rules Committee Staff Analysis acknowledges that portion may be unconstitutional and that it may increase judicial workload. These one-sided bills favor alimony payors, ignore the rights of alimony recipients, will eliminate stay-at-home parents and be destructive to Florida’s families and children. I oppose these unjust bills and encourage each member of the Florida Legislature to vote against them, and strongly urge you to veto this legislation should it pass

hope you read ALL the REFORMERS comments and notice HOW VERY FEW IF ANY REFORMERS ARE SAYING "I miss my children" , "I want my kids", "I wish I could go with them on vacations more" " I wish I could cook for my kids, take them to the movies, school, Doctors appointments" NO ALL THEY SEAM TO CARE ABOUT IS GETTING OUT OF PAYING THEIR COURT ORDERED OR AGREED UPON ALIMONY OBLIGATION.I want you also to take in consideration that most of the payers are man, but i want you to remember that we are millions of women in all the sunshine state who will stand by you in the next elections ! DONT LET US DOWN!

PLEASE VETO SB718 / HB231 TO HELP FLORIDA FAMILIES


So brave of this young lady !! Thank you Miss Kay for your words! and for support all the women in Florida! and congratulations on your honors, I have no doubt, that you have being raise from a good MOTHER!!

Lorena

@ just asking , I can tell by the way you write that you are a women hater, Lysol? you forgot that you came from one, shame on you

4Families

I feel representatives are basing public policy on their own bias and personal events in their own lives, certainly not evidence based analysis. Rep. Tom Lee and Ritch Workman are recent divorcees with their own axe to grind and unfortunately the women and children of Florida are going to feel the brunt of these short sighted decisions. It is a complete abuse of power by our elected officials and I am opposed to it.
Families who thought they were "moving on" are once again pulled back into the judicial system when modifications are sought by ex-spouses.
The 50/50 presumption of timesharing for children is completely ridiculous. They do not want to be "backpack" kids and bounce back and forth 50% of the time.
All this completely one-sided legislation does is favor men and enable them to walk away from their families without any obligations...financial or otherwise.
To revisit a standing agreement through modifications is unconstitutional and will only clog an already overburdened judicial system. This bill is bad , it is an outrage and is not best for all........VETO!

Jean

Being a stay at home parent is the most important job in the world! Its a shame that it will be a thing of the past if this bill is signed. You will no longer be able to make this decision as a couple. The government will make this decision for you.

Mark Webber

Most of these comments are full of ridiculous examples of circumstances against this bill. My ex-wife basically stole all of her children's support money to buy herself extravagant items while leaving the kids without proper clothing, et al. She refused to work to even pay for herself and was capable with skills to get a decent job. She let my son suffer without any support or teaching basically let happen what ever he learned from friends and school. This was made worse due to his diagnosis of Autism. After I got increased custody, I was able to help my son finish his high school studies. This bill would have helped my son live a better, more stable life. The system is already biased against the father from the start. I will be supporting my son for life which I will gladly do, but why should I support my ex-wife who is remarried with more "disabled" kids. The system failed my son and me. I am also disabled from my career as a public servant in a high risk job, where is my alimony check? I don't want her money. I just want to help my son and move on in life. Governor Scott should sign this bill into law.

Carl

There are a lot of problems that face children, spending too much time with each parent when they are fit is not one of them!

Carl

Children deserve both parents. Just sign the bill.

Robin D

Laurie Detrick:
It sounds to me like your husband did all the heavy lifting, not you. I find it amazing to read your entitlement-minded diatribe. Why have you been out of the workforce for 17 years? It doesn't take 17 years of unemployment to raise a family or throw the occasional dinner party for your husband's clients. You are the typical princess and I am not surprised at all that your husband wants to be with someone else. Use your half of the marital assets to better yourself and find a career. Or, more likely, find yourself a new daddy to marry.

Lee Kallett

The 22 year old woman photographed as Simone Kay is incorrect. There is no such person with that name. Her legal name is Simone Kallett and she is my daughter. Here is a prime example of why the Alimony Reform bill must be approved to end the strife and animosity between ex's and making the children choose between parents. Continuing the current antiquated alimony laws only promotes division in families. Be the Governor to mend the acrimony that is caused by the current lifetime alimony laws. The ex-wife came out of the closet and chose to live a lesbian lifestyle. Why should I have to continue supporting an able bodied, college educated woman who chooses not to work but collect her $4000/month of alimony? Please end the injustice to us and families in Florida. Thank you.

Rebekah Miller

Children need both parents!!! Please governor sign the bill!

Bea

That is truly SAD that Simone would come out against her Father like that. She is of an age to know better. Just remember, Simone, your Father deserves a life too and you have his DNA so you are part of him even if your Mother has taught you differently. (I am assuming that because I have seen it happen in other families). I sincerely hope that Gov Scott will sign the bill because it is NOT anti woman. Just remember that all women are at risk of paying permanent alimony with the current laws. If that happens, you will see your life turned upside down unless you are a highly paid executive.

amar persaud

Women crying foul need to grow up and stop this sickening attitude of victim and entitlement mentality. There is a reason why we call this country is the greatest democracy in the world. We do not tolerate victim mentality. Every person can be as successful or unsuccessful as they choose to be. The opportunities are endless out there. How would you like to look back at your life when you become old? How do you want to be remembered? Do you want to be remembered as someone who sucked the life and blood of someone in order to survive or do you want to be known as the one who stood up and be an example of someone with courage, selflessness, and respect for all. I believe women are highly capable and don't need a man to support them till they die. It's a shame that some women like NOW have a double standard mentality. They lack integrity because they want equality yet they want women to get permanent alimony. This sounds like we are creating a welfare system. Governor Scott need to lead and not get distracted by noise.

amar persaud

My Ex wife spent all the kids child support money on herself. She had an affair and brought the end to a 22 year marriage. But of course,we are in court now and after thousands in attorney fees for the FLS attorney, she wants permanent alimony and will not settle. During the past 22 years she was mentally abusive and I made the mistake of staying in the marriage because of the kids. Now we have been in court for 3 years and of course the judge as expected takes her side. She has alienated my kids from me by constantly bombarding them with derogatory comments about me. At the time of divorce, my relationship with my kids was good. This bill will put both parents on equal footing and remove the bias judgement happening in our courts as judges repeatedly favor women in their decisions.

Geoff Harrington

To Lee, your posting of personal information on this forum is completely against the Miami Herald's ToS, and they have been alerted to this breach. Secondly, what is the point of including your ex-wife's "decision to live a lesbian lifestyle"? This is a totally irrelevant personal attack that detracts attention from the real issues at hand.
Like that you choose not to speak to your children.
Like that you blatantly lie about how much money your ex-wife receives.
Like that your real reasons for getting divorced lie totally elsewhere, in your medical conditions.
Like that you live in a million-dollar beach home and have no fiscal suffering.
I wonder if your 'friends' over at Alimony Florida have actually ever examined any of your claims. ALL of this is available publicly, right in court records.
So I ask, how vindictive, how childish do you actually have to be to support something as inhumane as this? Shame on all of you. Veto.

Ava Lanter

My bet is that's not his daughter. A real dad would never in public use his daughter as a pawn and would certainly never put a last name in the paper by which she does not identify herself. Perhaps she chooses not to use a certain last name for safety reasons on the Internet. A real father would never do that put his daughter in danger. Not his daughter. That's not a loving father. This is not her father.

Colleen

I'll tell you what's inhumane... Living off of someone else's hard earned money is cruel and selfish. I'm shocked NOW is supporting the notion that women are weak, unable to succeed, and need a lifetime hand-out. Women who have figured out how to do it all, and to do it well, are in FAVOR of this bill. I co-parented my daughter 50/50 and actually dodged the bullet from having to PAY alimony to my ex-husband. I would bet if the truth was ever known, the MAIN reason anyone wants alimony from an ex-spouse is out of spite. Come on ladies, believe in yourselves, be creative with co-parenting if necessary, and MOVE ON!

Tarie MacMillan

This bill is NOT anti-women. I am a 62 year old WOMAN and I am one of many, many WOMEN who PAY permanent alimony. I was married 13 years and have been paying alimony for 13 years. I have a judgment to my ex-husband, who has a degree in business but has CHOSEN to not be employed since 1996.

I have seen my income steadily decline in the past 10 years to 25% of what it once was. The judgment stipulates that because I’m unableto pay the full amount my ex gets paid 65% of my earnings and I get
paid 35%. I work every day, he does not, and yet he makes 65% and I must live on 35% of my income until he dies or I die.

He never paid any child support and my children have both talked with him severasl times begging him to get a job and to stop taking money from me. My daughter doesn't speak to him at all, as she feels that he chose money over her.

After 11 years of court battles with my ex taking me back to court for more money, I also went through a 2- year long attempt at modification that accrued $90,000 in legal fees and NOTHING CHANGED. (This $90,00 is in addition to the hundreds of thousands
of other attorney fees over the 13 years).

My children and I have down-sized our living arrangements 4 times, while he still lives in the marital home. I have lost everything due to legal fees for myself and my ex and the alimony judgment---–
my home, car, retirement and I have claimed bankruptcy. I had a stroke in 2011 and would like to retire in the near future.

I am not allowed to do this, no matter what the attorneys say. My attorney told me I would go to jail if I didn't work any more, because of the judgment against me,

Furthermore, I am out of funds and cannot hire an attorney, and so am left on my own to decipher legal documents and try to keep my head above water. Passing of this bill will make a positive difference
in many lives and it certainly will in mine.

I am not AGAINST alimony. There are situations where people will need temporary alimony while they get back on their feet or learn a job skill, but no adult should be living off of another adult for the rest of their lives.

Gov Scott needs to sign the bill to help Florida's families.

Alimony Poor

Alimony is so 1950s. Get a job, get a life!

Sign the Bill

Does anyone really think LIFETIME is fair....except certain circumstances that the judges will still have the discretion to use?

St Pete Voter

Lifetime Alimony is outrages, we need guidelines and children need equal access to both parents!!

VETO

To Lee, your posting of personal information on this forum is completely against the Miami Herald's ToS, and they have been alerted to this breach. Secondly, what is the point of including your ex-wife's "decision to live a lesbian lifestyle"? This is a totally irrelevant personal attack that detracts attention from the real issues at hand.
Like that you choose not to speak to your children.
Like that you blatantly lie about how much money your ex-wife receives.
Like that your real reasons for getting divorced lie totally elsewhere, in your medical conditions.
Like that you live in a million-dollar beach home and have no fiscal suffering.
I wonder if your 'friends' over at Alimony Florida have actually ever examined any of your claims. ALL of this is available publicly, right in court records.
So I ask, how vindictive, how childish do you actually have to be to support something as inhumane as this? Shame on all of you. Veto

A real dad would never in public use his daughter as a pawn and would certainly never put a last name in the paper by which she does not identify herself. Perhaps she chooses not to use a certain last name for safety reasons on the Internet. A real father would never do that put his daughter in danger. Not his daughter. That's not a loving father. This is not her father.

WOW IM REALLY REALLY CONCERNED ABOUT YOUR CASE LEE, AND ALVINA THE TRUTH CAME OUT OF THE CLOSET IN 5 MINUTS , YOU ROWN DAUGTHER CAME TO ASK FOR VETO , I REALLY BELIVE THAT YOU ARE ANOTHER ANGRY PAYER, WHY IF YOU WERE A GREAT FATHER AS YOU CLAIME YOU OWN CHILD WILL COME AGAINST YOU TO THE GOVERNOR??? THAT IS A SHAME THAT YOUR OWN DAUGTHER WHO HAS HONORS AT THE UNIVERCITY CAN EVEN CALL HER NAME "" KAY"" I ASUME IS YOUR EX LAST NAME , IF SHE WERE THE WAY YOU AND ALVINE DESCRIBE HER IM SURE SHE WILL BE LIVING WITH YOU, SHAME ON BOTH OF YOU YOU ARE A CLEAR EXAMPLE OF WHAT THIS NEW REFORM WANTS TO MAKE IN FAMILIES, YOU LIE YOU LIE AND YOU LIE , BUT THE TRUTH ALWAS COME, THANK YOU MISS KAY FOR SHOW ALL FLORIDA THE KIND OF PEROSN YOU ARE ! ALL FRLORIDIANS ARE PROUD OF YOU!! IM ONE OF THEM!! THANK YOU!!

VETO VETO VETO VETO VETO VETO

Sign the Bill

Oh and by the way the bill is NOT anti family is anything it is PRO family REBUILDING families.

I wonder if these 12 would show up if the bill was to increase the payments......no cause they are one sided.

VETO

TO LEE KALLET AND ALVINA THE SECOND WIFE ...

BOTH OF YOU SHALL BE ASHAMED OF WHAT YOU JUST DONE, MAKING PUBLIC SIMONE NAME ALL OVER THE INTERNET, NOT CARING ABOUT HER FUTURE NAME, ONLY 2 SICK PEROSNS LIKE YOU COULD DO SUCH A SICK ACCT, EXPUSING YOUR OWN DAUGTHER REAL NAME THAT IS A SHAME , IM SURE THAT MANY WILL PAY TO READ YOUR DIVORCE RECORDS, AND THE TRUTH WILL SHOW UP TO PUBLIC.. YOU ARE JUST A EASY EXAPMLE OF WHY THIS BILL SHALL NOT PASS ANGRY PAYER AND A NEW SECOND WIFE LIVING IN A MULTIMILLION HOUSE AT THE BEACH.. SHAME ON BOTH OF YOU .... SHAME
veto

Lori Barkus P.A.

I wonder if, in counting the 2 dozen women, the reporter included the small child brought to the Governors office holding a sign about alimony reform. One can only imagine what that young girl was told about money, about men in general or about her father. That conduct does not meet the best interest of the child and it calls into question this thinking that a woman is a better parent simply due to gender. We need a balanced an equal approach to timesharing that does not give one gender an advantage over another. The new bill does that.

veto new alimony legislation

No I cant imagine , I bet you weren't there Lori , I bet you weren't there when he act the way he did just now exposing her name on line, as attorney you shall know better. at that age you can define the right from the wrong , she is not a baby any more and if you had read she has honors in the university , so Im sure that her dad is not who he really claim,

TO MISS KAY ... DONT LET OTHERS AKE YOU FEEL A SHAME OF WHAT YOU JUST HAD DONE!! thank you

Lori Barkus P.A.

I wasn't talking about Kay, who is an adult. There was a photo of a child who looked to be about 8 years old. She should not be involved in this for any reason.

Robin D

Why is it that certain anti-alimony reform posters continuously use ALL CAPS? If they yelled this much during the marriage, it's not surprising they find themselves single.

Elizabeth McWilliams

I do know the family of Ms. Simone Kay, not her real name. Her mother wants to have the children be against their father because he chose not to stay with a women who had numerous affairs. Yes they were with other women, but, that is irrelevant. She had affairs, and now receives alimony for life. This is a perfect example of how alimony wars divide and polarize families. If a person wants out of a marriage, they should receive alimony for a defined period of time if they are not working, but not for life. No one should bleed a former spouse indefinitely.

veto new alimony legislation

Again vent info that is not our business...why don't you stop bringing back the name of that young lady? and stop talking about her family ( mother) in that way ? I really start thinking that most of you Reformers are sick, how dare you Elizabeth bring back this, leave her alone , she may have her personal reasons, and more probably is that in base of her age and education, more LIKE her dad don't pay for her expenses and more like her mom is supporting her with the ALIMONY of course.. Here is the perfect example why the alimony shall not be remove... VETO

Scott

Alimony is not child support. If this is all about families then why is there alimony after all the children are grown? In a no fault state like Florida some kind of limits need to be set, else it's too easy for one of the spouses to split with the new boyfriend or girlfriend and leave the working spouse to pay for both of them.

Elvina Bergmann Kallett

Dear Governor Scott:

I have a job interview on Friday. I plan to tell them I want them to continue my salary forever if I quit or get fired. I also want them to continue to pay my salary when and if I ever get another job. Although, let's face it: why would I?

I have drawn up an employment agreement that spells this out, along with the fact that if they go out of business or for some reason can't afford to pay my salary anymore, they have to sue me to reduce their payments and it will take several months, maybe longer than a year, for a judge to order a reduction - and even then the judge may just decide to keep the payments to me coming.

What do you think? Sounds like a pretty good deal for me, huh? That's what lifetime alimony is all about. Why shouldn't I also have such a good deal?
(Thank you Robin Descamp for this.)

My husband is paying lifetime alimony to his ex-wife who left the marriage to pursue a lesbian lifestyle-with her twenty year old (blood relative) female cousin in fact. For this, she was rewarded with $48,000/year lifetime alimony. My husband attempted to modify this amount when he made $30,000 less the year after the divorce and has remained at that earning level for the last seven years (he's in sales and relies on commissions). The Judge ruled that $30,000 less in income wasn't a sufficiently significant change in circumstances to warrant a reduction. It certainly is to us since my husband is paying some months 65% of his gross earnings to the ex, leaving us with little to live on ourselves.

I urge your support for passage of the alimony reform bill into law as it goes a long way towards reforming Florida's outdated, unjust, and ultimately unfair alimony laws. It’s my sincere hope you are listening to your constituents and the people of this state and not the misinformation and propaganda being spread by the Family Law Section or other special interest groups with vested interests in preserving the status quo.

Please sign in favor of SB 718/HB 231 into law. You will help my family as well as many others.

Thank you.

Lee A. Kallett

Dear Governor Rick Scott:
I am writing you as a voter and citizen of Florida to urge your support for passage of the alimony reform bill into law as it goes a long way towards reforming our State’s outdated, unjust, and ultimately unfair alimony laws. It’s my sincere hope you are listening to your constituents and the people of Florida and not the misinformation and propaganda being spread by the Family Law Section or other special interest groups with vested interests in preserving the status quo.

I am a St. Pete Beach resident caught up in the injustice of the current alimony laws. I was betrayed by my wife after 20 years of marriage when she came out of the closet, declared herself a lesbian, acknowledged she’d always been one, and became active in the gay community. Divorce followed in Hillsborough County and the no-fault State of Florida sentenced me to a lifetime of alimony payments. There was no opportunity to present the reason for the divorce in court and the judge rewarded the ex-wife with permanent spousal support. She was in her 40s, a summacum laude university graduate and quite capable of providing for herself had she the incentive to do so. Awarding her lifetime alimony removed any such incentive. Instead, she chose to abandon her human resources executive career, opting to live off the $4,000 monthly alimony. I, conversely, must work to support the ex-spouse, leaving only minimal funds to pursue my own life and provide for my new wife and family and our widowed elderly mothers. I am by no means wealthy, have my own health issues, and find myself forced into a lifetime of indentured servitude.
The Family Law Section of the Florida Bar is opposed to this bill and has been spreading misinformation about both the bill and the current divorce and alimony law in what can only be viewed as a selfish attempt to preserve their own litigation-derived income. There is no other reason to oppose this bill. They assert this bill, if approved, would be devastating to families and this is absurd. The families in question were already devastated when the divorce occurred. It is the current laws that further devastate the parties afterwards by bleeding one while encouraging dependency in the other. The new bill does not in any way alter child support responsibilities so children’s welfare remains protected and provided for.
The FLS claims the proposed bill is anti-women and this is also completely untrue. Indeed, there are women paying lifetime alimony too, in some cases to men who abused them! Florida’s antiquated alimony laws date from an era when women were less educated and not expected to support themselves. Times have changed and single and divorced women are educated, trained, gainfully employed and financially independent.
The FLS claims the existing law already provides for termination of alimony when the obligor reaches retirement age. Like their other allegations, this is patently false and obviously self-serving. While the current law may provide the right to hire a lawyer (likely a member of the FLS!) and seek modification of alimony at retirement age, it does not end alimony payments nor does it assure a reduction in the amount being paid. Many alimony payers cannot afford or even think of retiring and will have to work until the day they die!
While the proposed bill provides for retroactively reviewing and re-hearing previous divorce settlements and possibly ending or modifying alimony, it does not call for the immediate termination of all previous alimony awards. If an alimony recipient can prove a clear need for alimony, the payments would continue. The bill does, however, call for abolition of permanent alimony and the establishment of specific guidelines on how long alimony should be paid.
Divorce shouldn't carry a lifetime penalty to one party for the benefit of the other. When a couple divorces, separation of lives should follow. The State of Florida is in effect penalizing me for a failed marriage caused by the deception and sexual identity issues of my former spouse. I am tethered for life to my gay ex-wife. Alimony Reform is needed to remedy this situation.

- Alimony should provide for a transition to a new life and not permanently fund that new life
- Alimony should be awarded based on need with established guidelines
- Alimony and its length should be determined via a formula and not the whim of a judge
Please consider the above and sign in favor of SB 718/HB 231. It’s fair, it’s what the people want and it’s the right thing for the State of Florida and its families.

Johnny

Gov scott
This Bill needs to pass Laws need to change if you are not traped in current Allimony Laws you Dont know how it fills to haft to pay some one as you cant move on with your life , It's Like being in a cage watching every thing around move foward and you just keep getting kicked back no fun .

Alimony poor

Alimony needs to go away like other forms of slavery did!

John Fromularo

There are some crazy comments here. Let's not confuse child support with alimony. I believe some people are doing that. Child support is supported as currently written in law. All assets gained during the marriage are divided equally. If married more than 10 years, an ex-spouse is entitled to one half the higher earning ex-spouse social security. This is the same as for any currently married wife. The argument of a high earning man dumping his wife for a newer model is an old caricature. Wives file for divorce in the majority of cases that can be documented. It is silly to create the scenarios that many "veto" individuals are taking. Let people get on with their lives and end a bad relationship regardless of who filed for divorce. That is what a "fair" bill will do and this bill gets us most of the way there.

Joe

IN CONGRESS, JULY 4, 1776, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness” If this is held true then alimony is unconstitutional. If we all have equal rights then I don’t understand how one individual can be force to sustain another? Furthermore, I don’t recall in my marriage contract where I agreed to sustain or being sustained if things didn’t work out.

Let’s quantify some of these arguments. My wife was messing around with a convicted felon in front of my child while I was defending this country. In addition, she was involved in another four different relationships while we were married. Our current legal system decided that she was unable to work just because she filed for disability that was denied twice before and nailed me with $1,600 a month for alimony (11 years), $1,350 for child support and over $1,000 a month of marital debt (she is unable to pay and I have a clearance). This is all with a salary of just a bit more than $5,000 a month. Money set to a side, now could someone explain to me why a mother that brings convicted felons (at least two that I can prove) around their kids, tried to commit suicide twice is a more suitable parent than a meritorious sailor/warrior? Yes, I used to travel often but it was to ensure that we all have some kind of future. Now, the legal system has chosen sides with little if any effort to get to the bottom of the situation. In the military that is conceder poor leadership. Justice is only relevant when is balanced. When everyone has done due diligence and explore all of the facts. Our legal system is broken not only because of the antiquated laws in the books but because of those enforcing the laws are investing very little effort to ensure that those decisions are made with the best possible options. Meanwhile, the legal system continues to create situations that are just unacceptable.

The current system is annihilating the father from the equation and that is one of the reasons why our society has changed (not for the better). Divorces are the new norm and a reality that we all have to face. A child needs both parents to provide the balance (50/50) that he/she needs. These are the ingredients that made us successful in our lives so why should politicians change what it’s proven to work through thousands of years and thousands of civilizations?

On the other hand, I don’t understand how people that are married and never gone through this broken process could even have an opinion? It’s like a soldier that has never been to combat having an opinion? Freedom of speech is a right but with this right there has to be a certain amount of responsibility.

It’s time for a change and the best thing that Governor Rick Scott can do for Florida families is to sign SB718/HB231. Nobody likes change but sometimes it is absolutely necessary. It is called evolution.

“Men make history and not the other way around. In periods where there is no leadership, society stands still. Progress occurs when courageous, skillful leaders seize the opportunity to change things for the better.” —Harry S. Truman

Dean Blake

Everything is always a minority issue? WHY ? This unfair system we have now hits both men and women and 'life time indentured servant' is not something anyone who believes in freedom wants... except those sucking of those poor individuals that their only crime was trying to make a marriage work.. Child Support YES... But adult support? How embarrasing !!!

David DeRosa

Supporters
Reasons for signing

Some of these comments are ridiculous. A lawyer stating its unconstitutional to apply a law retroactively to change something for the best interest of a child no less. I am a father my daughter wants to see me more but her mom wont allow it and I cant modify because there is no substantial change in circumstance. If I was an amazing and involved father before the law changed to equal time sharing and am still an amazing involved father that does not constitute substantial material unforseen change in circumstance. Really how can we ever see our children as the statute intends. What a joke. If you have paid 140,000 in child support and are behind 15,000 these same lawyers call you a dead beat who doesn't care for your child. They are all hypocrites trying to feed themselves. Lastly my former wife regularly brings a dog with her to distract my daughter from being completely depressed and sad when leaving my house after an amazing weekend together. My daughter calls me from her bedroom at her moms house crying about how much she misses me.

d. Rector

My ex-husband, of 16 years, is a BIGOMIST, against me, and then did the same against wife number two. He also perjured himself several times in court. He is on wife number FIVE. He AGREED to permanent alimony, because he is an ENGINEER, and makes a lot of money. He also wanted to avoid JAIL, and this was a condition of his not spending a day in jail. He insisted that I stay home and raise our three children. I had a CHOICE as to whether he could see our three children, and I told him that he could, in spite of the LAWS HE BROKE. However, none of them wanted to visit with him. In fact, one son changed his last name when he turned 18, due to the fact, he wanted to work in this town, and he felt his dad's past, would effect him obtaining work. I was the one who paid all the bills...got a shrink to see the children, as they were very disturbed over the way their dad did, and embarrassed that their friends knew of the bigomy charges. One son died of cancer last year, and to my knowledge, his dad doesn't know or care. I have had one woman he courted, come to my house with a GUN, and had I not had a male family member present, I shudder to think what she would have done. I was constantly trying to get child support, as this man continually changed jobs, to make it hard on me and the children. He is now HIDING in ARGENTINA, but I started GARNISHMENT against his Social Security, about three years ago. FINALLY, after my health is gone from all this STRESS, and DOING IT ALONE, I am not having to worry about paying my bills on time. Left up to HIM, he doesn't care, and never has.
GOVERNOR CRIST......PLEASE VETO THIS ALIMONY BILL. Many women such as I, who have never relied on welfare, will be on food stamps, as we are now to old to work, and our health is gone. There are to many on food stamps, etc. now. My ex is STILL working, making BIG BUCKS, and STILL cheating. It costs money to court. I simply want to pay my bills. This alimony helps me do that. Besides.....he got out of jail time for BREAKING THE LAW, and NOW, he gets by with his CRIMINAL ACT. Just not right. I am CONVINCED it is MOSTLY MEN, and their SECOND, THIRD, AND FOURTH WIVES, who OBJECT TO PERMANENT ALIMONY. Go figure.

VETO....VETO....VETO.....VETO....VETO.....VETO....VETO

Lee Kallett

I am writing as a voter and citizen of Florida to urge support for alimony reform and override the Governor's veto. The alimony reform bill goes a long way towards reforming our State’s outdated, unjust, and ultimately unfair alimony laws. It’s my sincere hope the legislators listen to their constituents and the people of Florida and not the misinformation and propaganda being spread by the Family Law Section or other special interest groups with vested interests in preserving the status quo.

I am a St. Pete Beach resident caught up in the injustice of the current alimony laws. I was betrayed by my wife after 20 years of marriage when she came out of the closet when she was having an adulterous affair with her then 20 year old blood relative-cousin, declared herself a lesbian, acknowledged she’d always been one, and became active in the gay community. Divorce followed and the no-fault State of Florida sentenced me to a lifetime of alimony payments. There was no opportunity to present the reason for the divorce in court and the judge rewarded my ex-wife with permanent spousal support. She was in her 40s, a summacum laude college graduate and quite capable of providing for herself had she the incentive to do so. Awarding her lifetime alimony removed any such incentive. Instead, she chose to abandon her career, opting to live off the $4,000 monthly alimony. I, conversely, must work to support the ex-spouse, leaving only minimal funds to pursue my own life and provide for my new wife and family and our widowed elderly mothers. I am by no means wealthy, have my own health issues, and find myself forced into a lifetime of indentured servitude.
The Family Law Section of the Florida Bar is opposed to this bill and has spread misinformation about both the bill and the current divorce and alimony law in what can only be viewed as a selfish attempt to preserve their own litigation-derived income. There is no other reason to oppose this bill. They assert this bill would be devastating to families and this is absurd. The families in question were already devastated when the divorce occurred. It is the current laws that further devastate the parties afterwards by bleeding one while encouraging dependency in the other. The bill does not in any way alter child support responsibilities so children’s welfare remains protected and provided for.
The FLS claims the proposed bill is anti-women and this is also completely untrue. Indeed, there are women paying lifetime alimony too, in some cases to men who abused them! Florida’s antiquated alimony laws date from an era when women were less educated and not expected to support themselves. Times have changed and single and divorced women are educated, trained, gainfully employed and financially independent.
The FLS claims the existing law already provides for termination of alimony when the obligor reaches retirement age. Like their other allegations, this is patently false and obviously self-serving. While the current law may provide the right to hire a lawyer (likely a member of the FLS!) and seek modification of alimony at retirement age, it does not end alimony payments nor does it assure a reduction in the amount being paid. Many alimony payers cannot afford or even think of retiring and will have to work until the day they die!
While the bill provides for retroactively reviewing and re-hearing previous divorce settlements and possibly ending or modifying alimony, it does not call for the immediate termination of all previous alimony awards. If an alimony recipient can prove a clear need for alimony, the payments would continue. The bill does, however, call for abolition of permanent alimony and the establishment of specific guidelines on how long alimony should be paid.
Divorce shouldn't carry a lifetime penalty to one party for the benefit of the other. When a couple divorces, separation of lives should follow. The State of Florida is in effect penalizing me for a failed marriage caused by the deception and sexual identity issues of my former spouse. I am tethered for life to my gay ex-wife. Alimony Reform is needed to remedy this situation.

- Alimony should provide for a transition to a new life and not permanently fund that new life
- Alimony should be awarded based on need with established guidelines
- Alimony and its length should be determined via a formula and not the whim of a judge
Please consider the above and vote in favor of an override of the veto. It’s fair, it’s what the people want and it’s the right thing for the State of Florida.

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