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Pet support case has interesting family law question

On Behalf of | Dec 17, 2015 | Family Law |

Virtually all Florida residents are familiar with spousal support, where one spouse makes payments to the other spouse to provide financial assistance after a divorce. Formerly known as alimony, spousal support has become far less common than in years past. Today’s spousal support is often a lesser amount and for a shorter duration than was the norm for previous generations. One unusual celebrity case takes a different approach on this type of family law support payment.

Actress Mandy Moore married musician Ryan Adams in 2009 after a short engagement. When the couple split in early 2015, they had no children together, but they had amassed a total of eight pets. Now that they are seeking divorce, Moore is asking Adams to pitch in with the care of their two dogs and six cats. In fact, she is asking that he make monthly payments to provide for their needs.

Moore is asking for $37,000 per month. Adams earns an estimated $151,000 each month, while Moore brings in significantly less than that. Moore is claiming that her income is insufficient to cover the bills that the couple previously shared. It is unclear whether the $37,000 amount is intended as spousal support and pet care or if that amount is solely for the care and comfort of the eight pets. Moore is also asking that Adams immediately take four of the animals to his new residence.

Many in Florida find it absurd that a spouse would ask his or her soon-to-be-ex for a significant amount of money to cover pet care. However, it is important to remember that each and every family law case is unique. If Moore is able to make a convincing argument that her animals require costly care, then she may be able to prevail in asking for monthly pet support assistance. No matter the outcome, it will be interesting to learn just how much time and attention the court is willing to give to the matter.

Source:, “Actress Mandy Moore Asks Ex Ryan Adams to Pay ‘Pet Support’ in Divorce Documents“, Kipp Jones, Dec. 12, 2015