How are benefits divided for divorcing service members?

On behalf of Pedrick Law Group, APC posted in military divorce on Wednesday, February 20, 2019.

Marriage and military careers are often difficult to mix, as the dual demands of a spouse and the service can cause stress and occasional chaos. Children also may suffer the disagreements of spouses who rely on each other for information on a next posting or deal with extended absences. Divorce can often prove just as complicated, including the management of military benefits after the end of a marriage.

How are divisions of military benefits decided?

There used to be confusion about how financial and supporting benefits could be separated, with variations by service branch, and occasionally, by state. Fortunately, a revision to the appropriate U.S. code in 2017 gives service members a more uniform approach.

Can spouses now predict benefits related to military divorces?

The appropriate rule, known as the “frozen time” rule, brings together two principles. The first is that benefits are evenly split between former spouses after a divorce. The second is that a former spouse receives a share of benefits calculated to a military spouse’s rank and billet at the time of the divorce.

Are these figures changed by any settlement between spouses?

The division of benefits is independent of any civil court or family court action regarding the spouses or their families. This simplifies the legal process regarding benefits.

How can I get help with a military divorce?

A lawyer in the appropriate civilian jurisdiction can help with many of the changeable parts of settlements and custody during a military divorce. An attorney can help review the details of a divorce proceeding and represent a spouse’s interest in court.

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