Many divorcing spouses who receive spousal support elect to do so on a monthly basis. However, in some cases, they may be able to ask for the total amount in one up-front lump sum payment.

Of course, this requires that the paying spouse has sufficient assets to make such a payment. Many do not. However, if that is feasible, there are many advantages to seek a lump sum alimony payment.

Why Choose a Lump Sum Payment?

Permanent alimony is far rarer than in the past. Many women, who are generally the recipients of alimony, are capable of supporting themselves. If they've been out of the workplace for a time, judges will often order temporary alimony until they can get the skills or education they need to go back to work. Therefore, a lump-sum payment may get you more than you'd receive if you opted for temporary monthly payments.

A lump sum payment means that you don't have to worry about your spouse's ability or willingness to pay later on. It prevents having to wrangle with your ex down the line. This can happen if your or your ex's financial fortunes change or if you begin a new relationship and your spouse argues that you are no longer entitled to alimony.

Each state's laws regarding spousal support are different. Therefore, if you or your spouse relocate to another state, you could find yourself back in court renegotiating your settlement. Regardless of whether you move or not, a lump sum payment means less, if any, contact with him or her -- particularly if you don't have minor children.

Important Considerations When Seeking a Lump Sum Alimony Payment

If you'd prefer a lump sum payment, it's essential to have a financial professional advising you on the best way to handle what will likely be a large sum of money and to protect it should you remarry. If you know that you're not responsible with money, this may not be the best option.

If you get a lump sum payment, you can't go back and seek more if your financial fortunes don't turn out the way you expect. If you're not certain of how much extra financial assistance you'll need in the future as the result of your divorce, you may not want a lump sum payment.

It's essential to get sound legal and financial advice on the best options for collecting both spousal and child support payments. This can make all of the difference in your financial future.