Divorce can be cumbersome and complex, but military divorce reaches a whole new level of difficulty. With all of the military divorce complications not known in civilian divorce, it is important to have a trusted military divorce attorney at your side to protect your interests throughout the complex process.
At R.S.C. Law Group, we have many years of experience handling military divorces in Monterey and San Benito County, so we understand the effect federal law has on the dissolution of your marriage. We are committed to making sure your financial and legal interests are properly represented.
Division of Military Benefits upon Divorce: Ordinary retirement pay in California is typically considered community property subject to equitable division upon divorce. The same can also be said for a military pension, although simply being the spouse of a service member does not guarantee a marital share. The Uniformed Services Former Spouses’ Protection Act (USFSPA) provides that state courts may decide whether and in what manner to divide military retirement pay between spouses. Attorney, Rory Coetzee will play a critical role in ensuring that you obtain an equitable division of any moiliity retirement benefit. Military Benefits for Former Spouses Under the USFSPA Service members’ former spouses may enjoy certain medical, commissary and exchange benefits and privileges after divorce under the USFSPA. Eligibility for full benefits is limited to spouses of service members with at least 20 years of service creditable for retired pay in marriages lasting 20 years or more, with no less than 20 years of overlap between marriage and military service. Former spouses with less than 20 years of overlap but at least 15 and who otherwise meet the requirements of the 20/20/20 rule above are also eligible, but only for one-year of transitional benefits.
Child Support and Service Members: When calculating Child Support for service members, that service member’s basic pay and allowances are considered in setting the person’s child support obligation. A service members’ basic pay varies depending on their military rank or grade. This is the gross income service members report for income tax purposes. Allowances are additional compensation service members earn for different things like housing—Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH)—and food. Although BAH and other allowances and bonuses are income tax free, these amounts must still be considered for the purpose of child support. In certain circumstances the government may garnish service members’ wages if they fall behind or outright ignore their child support obligation.
Military Move Away Orders: Being in the military means frequent relocation. Service members with legal custody of a child are often ordered to move to another base in a different city, state, or even country. The decision whether service member custodial parents can move with a child is one left to the discretion of the court. If you are seeking or opposing a move away order, it is critical to enlist the legal help of a military divorce lawyer who Monterey County / San Benito County residents trust. At R.S.C. Law Group, attorney Rory Coetzee can make sure your parental rights are fully represented.
Picking the Right Lawyer Is the First Step in Winning Your Case.
Contact our Monterey or San Jose office today to schedule a free thirty minute consultation with an experienced Monterey / Santa Clara County / San Benito, California family lawyer.
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