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Divorcing in the military

Although going through a divorce is the same no matter your profession, as a person in the military, there are some other factors that you need to take into account. If you or your spouse is currently on active duty overseas, for example, the divorce process may take longer. There are also financial implications that you should be aware of as a person in the military that is getting divorced.

For all couples going through a divorce, the most important thing is to be aware of the standard divorce process. You should try and maintain a civil form of communication with your former partner, since it will be beneficial for both of you. As a person in the military, or as a person with a spouse in the military, it is also important to be aware of Uniformed Services Former Spouses' Protection Act (USFSPA). The USFSPA is a form of financial protection that helps the former spouse gain child support for the children of the marriage, support for themselves and some form of pension or retirement pay.

The terms of the retirement pension package for former spouses is quite complex, and it relies on the marriage lasting for at least 10 years, and that their partner was in the military was serving for at least 10 of the years of the marriage. If this is the case, then the former spouse is entitled to a DFAS payment.

Divorcing in the military can add some complexities to the divorce process, both for financial and situational reasons. Therefore it is important to consult with a trusted legal advisor who can help you through the process.

Source: Military, "Understanding divorce in the military," accessed Oct. 06, 2017

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