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Child support and alimony have different purposes

A divorce can leave a lot of questions in the lives of Florida residents. While one of the parties may continue to work and earn the income that they made while they were in their martial relationship, the other may worry about how they will make ends meet without the support of their ex. In situations such as this, a court may award the non-working spouse with alimony to help them get back into the working world.

Alimony is support for a former spouse and may not be awarded in every divorce case. If the parties to a divorce are self-sufficient and do not rely on each other's earnings to live then they may simply divorce with no alimony agreement or order in place. However, when couples with kids go through divorces it is practically certain that they will be bound to a child support agreement or order that will go toward the costs associated with raising their kids.

Child support has been discussed extensively on this blog and covers costs related to child-rearing. Parents are not absolved from their duties to financially support their kids just because their marriages end, and therefore child support payments help them help their kids even when they no longer live under the same rooves. While alimony is not always necessary during a divorce, child support generally is always mandated.

Child support can be used to keep a child healthy and safe but generally cannot be used by a parent to buy themselves clothing or other personal goods. Costs that directly relate to a child's needs may be paid for with child support, but if the costs only benefit the parents then a different source of income like alimony may need to be used. Further discussion on this topic should be pursued with a divorce and family law attorney.

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