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What to expect when divorcing your military spouse

On Behalf of | Apr 13, 2023 | Military Family Law |

When your spouse is on active duty, they can spend months or even years away from you. A military member’s spouse has their own battles to fight. Military duty can change a person. As the spouse filing for divorce, you must understand that there are unique rules that apply to military members.

Delay due to deployment

If the military spouse is unable to proceed with a divorce case due to deployment, they can delay the case until they return. It protects the military spouse from misrepresentation while they are on active duty. The law applies to all military members regardless of where they reside.

Residency requirements

If they reside in Mississippi, they must have proof that they were a resident there for at least six months before any of the spouses can file for a divorce. It is a requirement of the state for all who wish to file for the divorce under their jurisdiction. It is also acceptable if the military spouse is in the state due to active duty for the same amount of time. Either spouse can establish residency through a driver’s license or by registering to vote in the state.

Military pension division

The Uniformed Services Former Spouses’ Protection Act safeguards the rights of military members and their spouses. A military member who retired after at least 20 years of service is eligible for a lifetime retirement pension. If they were married to their spouse for 10 years and those years coincided with the member’s creditable military service, the spouse may receive half of the total pension. It may vary depending on the divorce settlement. The check may come directly from the Defense Finance and Accounting Service or your ex-spouse, so you should be explicitly aware.

Getting a divorce is hard enough, but navigating through a military divorce can be inherently more complex. You should know what to expect and prepare yourself for the long battle ahead.