Any divorce case has the potential to become complex but this is particularly true with military divorces. Military divorces must resolve all of the same terms as any other. Child custody, property division, and spousal support are just a few of these. These terms become much more complicated during a military divorce. For example, if you are in the military and you are deployed, that can complicate child custody and visitation matters.
In addition to these complex matters, military divorces also involve their own issues that are as unique as they are challenging. If you or your spouse is in the military and you are getting a divorce, below are three things you need to know.
Jurisdiction and Military Divorce
In most divorce cases, determining which state has jurisdiction over the case is fairly easy. This is because the two people involved usually live together in the same state. In military divorces though, the matter is not so simple. Jurisdiction becomes a more complicated matter due to the very nature of military life. The law allows a person to file for divorce in the state in which they reside.
Under Ohio law, a person must reside in the state for at least six months immediately before they file. This does not always apply to members of the military. Under federal law, military pensions can be divided into the state of residence for the service member.
People often mistakenly assume that during a military divorce, the spouse who is not in the military will automatically receive the main share of child custody. This is because members of the military could be deployed at any time. Fortunately, being in the military does not automatically mean that a person will lose their child custody case.
Still, deployment is a possibility that must be addressed during a military divorce. As in any other type of divorce case, the two spouses involved can reach an agreement about what will happen if one or both of them are deployed. If the two parties cannot reach an agreement, the matter will have to go to court. Typically, a person who serves in the military will designate a trusted adult to take on child custody and visitation responsibilities while they are away.
The Division of Military Pensions
Dividing military pensions is one of the most complicated aspects of a military divorce. Under the law, divorced spouses are entitled to a portion of their spouse’s military pension if they were married for at least ten years. The service member must have also been in the military for at least ten years, and those timelines must have overlapped. However, even when a person was not married for the required ten years, they may still be entitled to a portion of the pension.
Our Columbus Family Lawyers Can Help with Your Case
Divorce is never easy, but it becomes much more complicated when one party is in the military. At Lawrence Law Office, our Columbus family lawyers can help you through the unique challenges these cases present so you obtain the best possible outcome. Call us now at (614) 363-0553 or contact us online to schedule a consultation.