In a legal sense, military personnel seeking divorce are no different from civilians, so the steps of the entire process are the same. However, if you are in the military or married to a member of the military, there are different factors which can affect your divorce proceedings. Read on below to learn more.
Some Differences To Consider
The entire process of divorce may take longer, in fact, if one part of the couple seeking divorce is on active duty in a remote area or has a permanent station overseas. Also consider that some states have relaxed the residency requirements for active duty service personnel who want to file for divorce in the state they are stationed in.
The Uniformed Services Former Spouses’ Protection Act
As well as an understanding of the general divorce process, military couples need to know about the role of the Uniformed Services Former Spouses Protection Act. The USFSPA provides a federal statute for the military, and guides them on accepting and understanding state statutes when it comes to military divorce. These issues include child support, spousal support, and military retirement pay/pension. These can vary state by state. The USFSPA allows states to classify military retired pay as property, rather than income, as it would be for civilians in an equivalent situation in some cases.
On Military Retirement Pay/Pension
Direct retirement payments are made through the Defense Finance and Accounting Service. In order for an ex-spouse to receive payments, the couple must have been married for ten years. That decade of marriage must overlap with a decade of military service. However, depending on the state’s date of division, the amount of time you have been married may be judged on different criteria. Different states may judge you to be married for different lengths of time, depending on different factors.
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