According to Florida case law, and statutory law, as of the date of this article, the court is required to make a specific factual determination as to whether the spouse has an actual need:
“In the final judgment of dissolution, the trial court denied the former wife’s requests for alimony, life insurance, and attorney’s fees. It found that the former wife had monthly expenses of $2,859.64 and that the former husband had monthly expenses of $6,904.65. The trial court noted that the former wife’s financial affidavits reflected a need for alimony but also noted that her bank accounts “told a different story” than the need reflected by her financial affidavits. But it made no conclusions regarding this perceived discrepancy. The trial court then found that the former wife had “managed” to save some money while the dissolution was pending, that the former husband had almost nothing in savings at the time of the hearing, and that the former husband had no ability to pay alimony. Based on its finding that the former husband had no ability to pay alimony, the trial court declined to make any determination regarding the former wife’s need, finding that it was not required to do so under Mills v. Johnson, 147 So. 3d 1023, 1024–25 (Fla. 2d DCA 2014). Likewise, the trial court made no determination regarding whether the former wife had a need in regard to her request for attorney’s fees, finding only that she had more of a current ability to pay them than the former husband, and it denied her request for life insurance without any comment whatsoever. This was error.
Section 61.08(1) expressly requires that “[i]n all dissolution actions, the court shall include findings of fact relative to the factors enumerated in subsection (2) supporting an award or denial of alimony.” (Emphasis added.) The trial court here was required to make “a specific factual determination as to whether” the former wife had “an actual need for alimony or maintenance” regardless of whether it granted or denied the alimony she sought and regardless of whether it also found that the former husband had an ability to pay. See § 61.08(2) (“In determining whether to award alimony or maintenance, the court *284 shall first make a specific factual determination as to whether either party has an actual need for alimony or maintenance and whether either party has the ability to pay alimony or maintenance.”); see also Engle v. Engle, 277 So. 3d 697, 698 (Fla. 2d DCA 2019).”
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