Legally, divorce procedures are the same for military personnel as they are for anyone else. However, in some situations, having one or both spouses with an active military status can affect the divorce filing process and timeline.
If one spouse is deployed or stationed away from home, for example, the process of getting the divorce filed with the appropriate court may take longer. Residency requirements may also be tricky when filing, but some states have more lenient residence-related rules for active duty service personnel who file for divorce.
The Uniformed Services Former Spouses’ Protection Act
Couples with one or both spouses in the military should understand how the Uniformed Services Former Spouses’ Protection Act (USFSPA) may affect the division of assets during their divorce. The USFSPA addresses service-related questions involving former spouses’ eligibility for base privileges like commissary and exchange, health care coverage and other benefits, military retirement pay, and more.
Under the USFSPA, a former spouse is not automatically entitled to a portion of the service member’s retirement pay. There are specified requirements regarding the length of the marriage and the service member’s active duty status for a spouse to qualify to receive some of the retired pay.
Dividing Assets and Determining Custody and Support
Any divorce will likely require arrangements for the following:
- Division of marital property such as homes, vehicles, and personal items
- Division of financial assets
- Division of debt including credit card bills, loans, and more
- Alimony/spousal support
- Child custody and support
Determining the living arrangements of a military couple’s children can be very stressful, especially when deployment or frequent relocation is involved. The team at Divorce Done Right understands the complexities of military divorce. We are knowledgeable about the state and federal laws that could affect the division of property in these cases, and we are dedicated to helping spouses navigate any issues that arise.
If you and/or your spouse is in the military and you’re considering divorce, call (866) 337-4448 or fill out the online form to schedule a consultation.