Gov. Rick Scott vetoes controversial alimony bill


Gov. Rick Scott vetoed a controversial measure that would have overhauled Florida's alimony laws. 

The bill would have altered the way courts determine alimony by giving judges guidelines to decide alimony payments, limit the duration of alimony to recipients, eliminate "lifetime" alimony. The bill also eliminated guidelines for marriages that lasted more than 20 years encouraging judges to equalize the income of former spouses and urges judges to presume during child-custody arrangements that both parents should get 50-50 custody.

The News Service of Florida reports Scott focused on the child-custody aspect of the bill for his veto. 

"Current law directs a judge to consider the needs and interests of the children first when determining a parenting plan and time-sharing schedule,'' Scott's veto letter says, according to NSF. "This bill has the potential to upend that policy in favor of putting the wants of a parent before the child's best interest by creating a premise of equal time-sharing. Our judges must consider each family's unique situation and abilities and put the best interests of the child above all else."