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Military Divorce Archives

The relationship between divorce and the military

Each year in Alaska, a number of people serving in the military either file for divorce or respond to their spouses' petitions. Military service, while certainly laudable, is associated with a greater likelihood of getting divorced than is civilian life, for a variety of reasons.

Military divorce and asset division in Alaska

Alaska residents who are going through a divorce and who are married to someone who is expecting a military pension or other benefitsmay be entitled to a portion of those benefits. To determine how much an individual may be entitled to, there are several documents that can be reviewed, depending upon whether the military spouse is on active duty or has retired, among other factors.

Divorce in the military

Alaskan couples who wish to divorce when one spouse is in the military have additional factors to consider along with the normal dissolution procedure. A federal law tells military branches to follow state laws with regard to ordered alimony, child support and retirement pay or pension plans. However, it allows states to consider military retirement pay or pensions as property rather than as income.

Military personnel divorces follow modified rules

Getting a divorce in Alaska when one or both spouses are in the military is subject to different laws and rules than when both parties are civilians. Regulations are in place to protect active military from being subject to a default divorce of which they were not even aware. Proceedings may be postponed for the full duration of active deployment and an additional 60 days beyond that. Conversely, this postponement can be put aside if it is an active military person who is seeking the divorce. Alaska also requires that the combination of spousal and child support cannot exceed 60 percent of a military member's pay.

Special considerations in a military divorce

Individuals in Alaska who are divorcing and are in the military may have some special considerations to keep in mind. Military divorces differ from other types of divorces. The Uniformed Services Former Spouses' Protection Act is a key part of military divorces. It suggests following state statutes regarding support. However, whether or not an individual's official state of residency is Alaska, military retired pay is considered property instead of income according to the USFSPA, and this affects asset division. The military also has specific guidelines regarding a spouse's claims on pension.

Air Force hoping to continue downward trend of divorce

When it comes to the divorce, most of us are familiar with the rate being placed at around 50 percent, though the number varies. In the military, where the numbers are tracked more closely, it is quite a different story. For instance, according to the Defense Manpower Data Center, the rate in the Air Force was 4.3 percent for enlisted airmen and 1.5 for officers. The rate is highest among enlisted women, though it isn’t exactly clear why.

Military members face unique issues in divorce

Military divorce is one of the topics we write about from time to time on this blog. One of the things we hope to make clear about the topic is that there are additional issues that can arise for couples in which one or both parties are military members. Procedurally, divorce is the same for everybody, but special circumstances for military couples can affect determinations of child support, child custody and property division.

How is military divorce different from a civilian divorce?

Although couples across the nation try their hardest to avoid divorce when a marriage goes sour, sometimes it is a necessary evil in order to free yourself from something that is making you so unhappy. But just like with any divorce, sometimes the process goes smoothly and sometimes it does not. This can happen a lot with military divorce as well because couples have to not only navigate state laws but federal laws as well.