Military divorce lawyers adhere to different rules and regulations than civilian divorce lawyers. As such, they receive specialized training to prepare them to represent military personnel in divorce proceedings. Military divorces must comply with all military regulations, follow certain residential requirements and include military pension provisions. Any military divorce involves both federal and state laws, especially when military pension and child support become issues.
A military divorce is simply a divorce that occurs when one of the parties is a military service member is retired or on active or reserve duty. When a divorce occurs, there is nothing too much different from a civilian divorce except that many states have relaxed residency requirements. If the spouse of a person serving in the military files for divorce, the active duty spouse must be served personally with the divorce summons if the state is to be involved. Some states allow for a divorce to be filed in the state where the military person is stationed. In other states, the petition must be filed in the state where the spouse resides or in the state where the military member has legal residency.
Military personnel going through a divorce have certain protections granted to them. They are expected “to devote their entire energy to the defense needs of the Nation” and as such are protected against certain lawsuits being filed during the time that the divorce is pending. In addition, the divorce proceedings may be delayed if the military person is on active duty and for sixty days following active duty
Military divorce lawyers must be very well versed in the military pension laws of the state where the divorce is taking place. In addition, these specialized lawyers need to be very knowledgeable in the federal divorce laws as well. Federal laws take a close look at former spouses in military pension distribution and Federal laws affect all active duty, reserve duty and retired military personnel. In some cases, up to 50% of a military member’s pension can be awarded to an ex-spouse. As with any divorce, sizable pension payments are often awarded to spouses who have faithfully supported their spouse’s chosen career.