You do not need to hire a military divorce attorney to handle your case. However, before you file, you should understand the special rules and procedures for going through your divorce while you or your spouse is enlisted in any U.S. military service branch.
There are state and federal laws that govern military divorces. An active-duty service member is protected from divorce. That is because the Service members Civil Relief Act protects service members from being sued for divorce or having to go through divorce proceedings while on active duty. This Act was created to allow military members to focus on their role of defending their country rather than battling in court.
Unlike civil divorce, military divorce jurisdiction determinations are not as straightforward. That is because the jurisdiction falls where the service member currently lives or is stationed – regardless if they are a legal resident in a different state. If he or she is not a service member, then one spouse can file for divorce in the state in which he or she lives.
Military Benefits and Pensions
Military pensions and benefits can be divided just like any civilian benefits and pensions. As long as there was 10 years of marriage and those 10 years overlapped military service, the Defense Finance and Accounting Service will pay the non-military spouse their share of the benefits. Former spouses of military members are also granted certain commissary and medical coverages as long as:
• The couples was married for 20 years or more;
• The service member was active for 20 years or more;
• There was a 20-year overlap of marriage and service at the same time.
Getting Assistance with Your Divorce
Filing for a military divorce is not as difficult as it may seem. If you are a service member that needs a divorce or you need to file a divorce against a service member, contact the Law Offices of Aliette H. Carolan today. We offer no obligation consultations an can assist you with the divorce process. Call now for an appointment by calling 305-358-2330.