Divorce is never an easy process, but when one or both spouses are in the military, it can become even more complicated. Military divorces present unique challenges that civilian couples may not face, such as understanding the 10/10 Rule, dealing with military pensions, and navigating the complexities of military benefits. In this article, we will provide tangible and useful tips to help you navigate the unique challenges of military divorce.
Understanding the 10/10 Rule
The 10/10 Rule is a crucial aspect of military divorce that determines whether a non-military spouse is entitled to a portion of the military member's retirement pay. According to this rule, the non-military spouse is eligible for direct payment from the Defense Finance and Accounting Service (DFAS) if the couple has been married for at least ten years, and the military member has served for at least ten years during the marriage. It is essential to understand this rule and how it may impact your divorce settlement.
Dividing Military Pensions
Another critical aspect of military divorce is the division of military pensions. Military pensions are considered marital property and can be divided between spouses during the divorce process. However, the method of division may vary depending on the state laws and the specific circumstances of the case. Some factors that may influence the division of military pensions include the length of the marriage, the rank of the military member, and any prenuptial agreements in place. It is essential to consult with a knowledgeable attorney who can help you navigate the complexities of military pension division.
Navigating Military Benefits
Military benefits, such as healthcare and commissary access, can also be a point of contention during a military divorce. The non-military spouse may be eligible for continued benefits under the 20/20/20 Rule, which requires that the couple has been married for at least 20 years, the military member has served for at least 20 years, and there is at least a 20-year overlap between the marriage and the military service. Understanding the eligibility criteria for continued military benefits is crucial for both spouses during the divorce process.
Child Custody and Visitation
Child custody and visitation arrangements can be particularly challenging in military divorces due to the unique demands of military life, such as frequent moves and deployments. It is essential for both spouses to work together to create a parenting plan that prioritizes the best interests of the children while considering the realities of military life. In some cases, this may require flexibility and creative solutions to ensure that both parents can maintain a strong relationship with their children.
Seeking Professional Help
Navigating the unique challenges of military divorce can be overwhelming and confusing. It is essential to seek the assistance of an experienced family law attorney who understands these complexities and can help to protect your rights and interests. At RCG Law Group, we have extensive experience in handling military divorces and can provide you with the guidance and support you need during this difficult time. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and learn more about how we can help you navigate the unique challenges of military divorce.