Will permanent alimony become a thing of the past?

A lot of couples view permanent alimony as nothing less than a life sentence that has been handed down by a judge. The spouse who has to pay does not get to stop making those payments until one of them passes away. Because it is never-ending, some people want to do away with these payments.

One of the problems is that a spouse may still have to support his or her ex even though the other person has moved on. Theoretically, when the ex gets married again, even permanent payments end. To skirt this rule, though, some people will just move in with a boyfriend or girlfriend. They get basically the same support and the same relationship they’d get if they were married, but, since they are just living together, the alimony payments keep rolling in.

In Texas, permanent alimony is very infrequently used. Shorter terms are far more common, but there are still situations in which the length of time can be indefinite. The court simply gets to rule on this.

In fact, many states have done away with permanent payments entirely. This could be a sign that it will turn into a growing trend that will move everywhere. At the very least, the law could be altered to take into account things like partners who live together, getting rid of one of the main loopholes that people trapped in these agreements really do disagree with.

People need to keep an eye on the shifting alimony laws to see if permanent payments are ever entirely outlawed, as this could have a huge impact on divorce proceedings.

Source: US News, “Taking the ‘Permanent’ Out of Permanent Alimony,” Geoff Williams, accessed June 26, 2015

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