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Challenges that military spouses encounter in a divorce

On Behalf of | Mar 29, 2021 | Family Law

The military lifestyle involves many challenges that civilians might not always appreciate or understand. Maintaining a healthy relationship while in the military faces difficulties such as frequent moves and lengthy deployments.

Marriages and divorces for military personnel often contain specific situations that require an understanding of situations unique to the military.

Information on divorce and pensions covers some of the scenarios separating couples contend with when dividing a military pension. Service members with 20 years of service receive a life-long pension. This valuable asset can involve many variable factors, such as whether both spouses belong to the military or whether the marriage was lengthy or just a few years. The passage in 1982 of the Uniformed Services Former Spouses Protection Act made pensions marital property.

The law allows for a negotiation of the pension, even though a spouse married for at least 10 years can lay claim to half of the pension. Any negotiation of a pension during a divorce demands that each person understands the potential value of the pension.

Guidance on divorce with children

Military One Source describes some of the emotional strain of a military divorce, especially when children are involved. Even if a separation is the best decision, both members of the dissolving marriage should tend to their emotional well-being.

The parents should also recognize signs of impact to their children. Actions to take include discussing matters with the children and supporting their feelings. The military culture can make things harder on children if a service member must relocate to a new base. Fortunately, military services provide resources and counselors to help individuals through a difficult time.