If you are legally separated, you are still technically married and can’t remarry. Copyright ©2020 MH Sub I, LLC dba Nolo ® Self-help services may not be permitted in all states. You are about to leave the Military OneSource site. Civilian attorneys who specialize in family law know their state’s laws. Advice on legal issues such as divorce and child custody, income taxes, the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act and more. Similarly, if they have a “separation agreement,” it just shows that they are currently separated and have made some agreements to help spell out rights and responsibilities during this time period. People often confuse being separated with a legal separation. For example, military laws and Federal statutes will determine the division and/or distribution of military pay, military benefits (retirement and health), and certain types of property. However, military spouses have access to military legal assistance services at no cost through installation legal assistance offices. This article explains the differences between these concepts and provides a basic overview of military divorce. Although military personnel and their family members have access to free legal services provided by the Judge’s Advocate General’s Corps (military officers who are also lawyers), military lawyers are not usually familiar with state divorce laws. If you are getting a divorce, you can still receive BAH in most cases. Learn the BAH Basics. In contrast, the laws of the state in which the divorce proceeding is filed (usually the state where one of the spouses has resided for the requisite period of time) will govern how the divorce proceeds and how most of the divorce-related issues are decided, including child custody and visitation, child support, alimony and the division of certain property and debts. Generally, the military views divorce as a private civil matter to be addressed by a civilian court.

A “legal separation” is a court order, which declares that a couple is legally and officially separated. Legal assistance attorneys do not represent clients in court. However, military spouses have access to military legal assistance services at no cost through installation legal assistance offices. If you get caught, you may try to argue that you were no longer “married” because you and your spouse were living separate and apart, or were legally separated, but that argument is not necessarily going to succeed. When it becomes clear that the separation is going to last for some time or that the next likely step is divorce, a couple may enter into a “separation agreement,” which is a written agreement that spells out how the couple wants to handle certain issues during their separation, including child custody and support, alimony payments (if any), and the division of property. The appearance of hyperlinks does not constitute endorsement by the Department of Defense of non-U.S. Therefore, it is essential to hire a civilian divorce attorney who is an expert in local family law matters. Call 800-342-9647 or start a live chat to schedule an appointment with a Military OneSource consultant. The assignment of married dual-military couples to isolated duty stations where an unaccompanied tour is directed may be authorized on a voluntary basis (except Diego Garcia) when in compliance with this article. Check out our section devoted to Military Divorce for lots of helpful information. Find programs and services at your local installation. You can also talk to a Military OneSource MilTax consultant at no charge to see how divorce may affect your taxes. The information provided on this site is not legal advice, does not constitute a lawyer referral service, and no attorney-client or confidential relationship is or will be formed by use of the site. Just about any way you look at it, divorce stinks. Entering your military marriage with realistic expectations can help prepare you for what's to come. Do Not Sell My Personal Information, Differences Between Military and Civilian Divorce, Uniform Services Former Spouse Protection Act, the service member had sexual intercourse with someone other than their spouse, the service member or their sexual partner was. Assignment of Military Couple to Isolated Duty Stations. However, a divorce may impact the amount of BAH you receive, and in some instances, may terminate your BAH altogether. The only sure way to avoid a criminal charge of adultery under the UCMJ is to wait until a state court grants you a final divorce decree, thereby making you “single” again. official family care plan to ensure the well-being of any children, reserve time together to talk openly and honestly, confidential, free, non-medical counseling services through Military OneSource, Emergency Contacts for Disasters and Evacuations. locations. Please reference the Terms of Use and the Supplemental Terms for specific information related to your state. A "stay" or postponement of a civil court or administrative proceeding is extended, if the service member proves he or she is unable to attend because of duty; or.