Military Divorce Governance
When one or both spouses are military members, both federal and state laws apply in the event of a divorce. To make sure that the divorce will be valid in both federal and Alabama legal spheres, there are specific actions and procedures to follow.
Nicholas A. Jones served for four years as a JAG Staff Judge Advocate, so he understands your lifestyle and concerns as a service member. The lawyers at Jones, Hawkins, & Associates can be your advocates to help you navigate through the process of military divorce.
Call us to discuss your military divorce case at 334-625-1754.
Complications Of Active Duty
Alabama law, in most cases, as well as the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Civil Relief Act, can keep the divorce from proceeding if one of the spouses is on active duty. This act is to prevent one spouse from becoming divorced without prior knowledge. If the divorce is uncontested, this rule can be satisfied by the military spouse signing an official divorce acknowledgment document.
Both state and federal military law regulate property division. The rules of the Uniformed Services Former Spouses’ Protection Act (USFSPA) stipulate that a nonmilitary spouse must meet the 10/10 rule in order to receive military retirement benefits directly from the DFAS division, which is in charge of military payroll. The 10/10 rule is met if the marriage lasted 10 years or longer and if 10 of those years included military service. If the 10/10 rule is met, the nonmilitary spouse can have retirement benefits sent directly to them through the DFAS. This means they don’t have to rely on their spouse to pay them directly. If the 10/10 rule is not met, the nonmilitary spouse may still be eligible for benefits, but the settlement would be handled differently because payments would not be coming from the DFAS.
Federal Influence On Support
Although Alabama courts use their frameworks to calculate child support and spousal support payments, the combination of both child support and alimony cannot go above 60 percent of the military member’s salary.
Gain Back Control
Whether you are a service member or a military spouse, past military or Army staff, facing these challenges at an emotional time can feel overwhelming. The legal professionals at Jones, Hawkins, & Associates in Montgomery are sensitive to this and will listen to your concerns. Our attorneys have extensive experience dealing with military division of assets, including retirement benefits. Together, we can develop a strategy that addresses your priorities. Give us a call at 334-625-1754 or use this online form to contact us about an attorney consultation about your situation.