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Navigating the unique complexities of a military divorce

Many things make military life different from civilian life. In the event of a divorce, a person's military service could play a role in property division, child custody and visitation schedules. If you are facing the prospect of a military divorce, you may find it helpful to prepare yourself for the complexities of the process ahead.

Military divorces can be quite similar to other types of divorce with a few exceptions. Preparation and an understanding of your rights can help you navigate the process more effectively while avoiding conflicts and protecting your interests. Some Alaska readers also find it helpful to seek guidance and advocacy as they pursue a final divorce order that provides stability and security for years to come.

Military service and your financial future

One of the main ways that military divorce is different from civilian divorce is the way that retirement benefits are divided in divorce. Military pensions are subject to certain rules and regulations, and it is certainly beneficial to understand how this process works as your future financial interests may be at stake.

Pensions earned related to military service are subject to division, just like any other marital asset. Generally, state laws will dictate the process of dividing this specific marital asset. However, consider the following:

  • A non-military spouse could be eligible for direct payment of pension benefits through the Defense Finance and Accounting Service if the marriage lasted for a period of at least 10 years that overlapped with at least 10 years of military service.
  • If the marriage lasted for a period of 20 years, the spouse could be entitled to medical and other benefits as long as the marriage overlapped with 20 years of military service.

Divorce is complex, and your financial future could be on the line. It can be beneficial to make decisions based on your best financial interests, not necessarily your temporary emotions. 

A divorce order that works

Divorce will change your life in many ways, including your future. While the end of a marriage is a difficult process, you can seek a final order that allows you to have stability and security for years to come.

As you approach your divorce, it may be prudent to seek a complete evaluation of your case. This can help you shield your interests and provide an understanding of how you can protect your rights during and after the finalization of your divorce.

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Anchorage, AK 99501

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