Military divorce is different on almost every level. If one or both spouses
are in the military, then the location of the divorce, child support and
custody, pension rights, and more are all affected. For starters, you
have to file in the state where the military spouse is either domiciled
or where that spouse resides. Both spouses can agree to file in another
state, if that works better. Your divorce will be subject to the laws
of the state where you file.
When there are children involved in a divorce, their welfare is paramount.
This is often the most heated issue in the process too, since so much
is at stake. When the divorce is also a military divorce, this further
complicates matters. To calculate
child support, you will have to use the state's child support guidelines as usual.
The difference is in how one must calculate the military spouse's
net income. This cannot be determined by his or her federal tax returns.
That spouse's finances have to be based on their Leave and Earning
Child custody is probably a thornier issue. Military parents live with the reality that
they could be deployed for months at a time, or they could be reassigned
to a new post across the nation. Military divorces should have multiple
parenting plans. This means, that if the service member currently lives
close enough to enjoy
visitation rights, then the current parenting plan can factor this in. Then the parents
will have to create a secondary parenting plan. This will prepare them
in the event that the military parent is transferred or deployed. What
usually happens with joint custody is that the civilian parent watches
over the child when the military parent is unable to. If the service member
has sole custody, the court may let that parent's new spouse or a
relative care for the child when the service member is deployed.
Another potential factor in military divorces is a Family Care Plan. This
plan must be created when a military parent is an unmarried or single
parent, or when both parents serve in the military. This plan will go
into effect whenever the service member must be gone for more than 30
days. The details depend on which branch of the military the parent is
in, but there are many issues in common. The Family Care Plan will identify
a civilian caregiver who is 21 or older, plus a secondary caregiver just
in case. Perhaps the plan will name a short-term caregiver and a long-term
caregiver. Contact information will be included. The plan must also specifically
outline how the caregiver and child will travel.
This is only a brief outline. Divorce law is complicated enough on its
own. When military service enters the equation, this only compounds the
complexity. With experienced Long Island divorce lawyers, however, you
can find that the process becomes smoother. If you have any questions
about your military divorce, please do not hesitate to
contact the Meyers Law Group. Let us help you through this difficult time with efficient and compassionate