In general, spousal support, most commonly known as alimony, is meant to be a substitute for the support a spouse received as part of the marital relationship. Ordinarily, the purpose of alimony is to place the supported spouse in as comparable a position of support as he or she enjoyed during the marriage.
Alimony can be awarded on a permanent basis or as temporary, rehabilitative support. It can also be awarded as a lump sum. When the parties are able to reach an agreement to settle the issue of spousal support between themselves, any of the types of alimony can be settled upon.
Where a claim for alimony is well supported, current South Carolina law favors the award
port a spouse received as part of the marital relationship.of permanent, periodic alimony, which usually means monthly payment of some specified amount on a permanent basis, or until remarriage, cohabitation with a romantic partner for a specific period of time, or death of the supported spouse. Permanent periodic alimony is usually modifiable upon a showing of a substantial change of circumstances.
Lump sum alimony is usually non-modifiable. It can be paid all at once, or on a payment schedule. In general, our Courts will award lump sum alimony only where special circumstances require it.
Rehabilitative alimony is also properly awarded only upon a showing of a special circumstance sufficient to justify a departure from permanent periodic support. This type of alimony is meant to allow the supported spouse to become self-supporting after a divorce.