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How Is A Military Divorce Different?

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New data from the U.S. military shows that divorce numbers among female enlisted troops are climbing, while the number for male enlisted troops is holding steady.

In this issue, we’ll talk more about it.

How many military men and women are divorcing?

During 2016, about 2.6% of married male enlisted troops filed for divorce. That rate has held steady since 2013. The divorce rate among female enlisted troop members inched up from 6.2% in 2015 to 6.6%.

The overall military divorce rate remained virtually unchanged at 3.1%. It was 3% in 2015.

Are military members more likely to divorce?

That’s a difficult question to answer because civilian and military divorce are calculated differently.

For example, the total civilian U.S. divorce rate is measured per 1,000 residents and excludes information from 5 states – including California.

Aspects of military life that can lead to divorce include:

  • Issues related to PTSD, depression or anxiety
  • Isolation and feelings of resentment if one spouse is sent abroad for deployment
  • Caregiving responsibilities if a service member is injured

How is a military divorce different than a civilian divorce?

We detailed this in a previous issue. There are three things that concern most people seeking military divorces:

  1. Child custody
    It may be important to you to ensure that they do not suffer from the divorce but that your rights to see them are uninterrupted. It is important to remember that non-military spouses are often under- or unemployed due to frequent moves, so child support is often a given in a military divorce. Custody for those who deploy often is usually not an option, so it is important to have an alternative for custody, such as your parents or a sibling, if your former spouse is unable or unwilling to take the children, as well.
  2. Spousal support
    If your former spouse gave up a career or put off going to school in order for you to deploy or attend training, it is likely that you will have to pay spousal support to allow her to finish her own education or job training. However, this amount can be adjusted once she has employment. It is very important to have an attorney who works with you on this issue and protects you from excessive requests for spousal support.
  3. Military pension
    If you plan to retire from the military, is it important to think about how you will divide your military pension or if you will offer your spouse cash in lieu of a portion of your pension. This may seem like a problem for the future, but spouses can take up to half of your pension for life in some cases, so it is critical that you protect yourself.

If you are looking for a San Diego legal separation lawyer to help you with your military separation or divorce, call The Men’s Legal Center. An experienced San Diego divorce attorney will help you protect your rights and take the steps necessary to reach resolution in your divorce issues.

You can reach us at 619-234-3838 or via email.