Blankenship Massey & Associates, Attorneys at Law
Call Us Today For A Free Consultation 859-905-0936
View Practice Areas

What you should know about the USFSPA and how it affects divorce

Military and civilian divorces share common ground that includes child support, child custody, alimony, property division and other aspects of marital dissolution. However, marriages ending where one spouse is serving in a branch of the military present unique and significant complexities.

The length of a marriage during a military career determines eligibility for various benefits. Although some states have special provisions, jurisdiction becomes a factor when frequent moves make meeting residency requirements difficult.

One of the more distinct differences in these marital dissolutions involves the Uniformed Services Former Spouses’ Protection Act.

The USFSPA applies to all military divorces after June 25, 1981. It governs how state courts divide retirement benefits as part of divorce agreements. Retired pay is computed based on the rank of the servicemember spouse at the time of retirement, not when a divorce is finalized.

Military personnel who delay ending their career to protect pensions should know that eligibility for retirement could be the determining factor, not the act of retirement itself.

To qualify for pension division, the military spouse must serve 20 years of creditable service. The marriage has to last at least ten years where the servicemember performed at least 10 years of creditable service.

In divorce proceedings, military pensions are not considered income. They are assets that are subject to 50 percent division. Because of that, alimony and child support amounts are determined separately. Nonmilitary spouses do not have to prove a “need” for the money, nor do these benefits stop once they remarry. Also, pensions can be preserved by trading other marital assets, such as a marital home.

A “do-it-yourself” approach may be unwise. The challenges that come with a military divorce necessitate the help of an attorney experienced in this complex area of family law.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Learn Your Legal Options Before You Make A Decision

For a free consultation, please call 859-905-0936 or fill out the form below.

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy

Email Us Today

Contact Blankenship Massey & Associates

Erlanger Office Location
504 Erlanger Road
Erlanger, KY 41018

Toll Free: 800-491-9956
Phone: 859-905-0936
Fax: 859-426-9001
Erlanger Law Office Map

Dry Ridge Office Location
20 South Main
Dry Ridge, KY 41035

Toll Free: 800-491-9956
Phone: 859-905-0936
Dry Ridge Law Office Map

map
BBB Accredited business A+