Divorces involving members of the military entail unique considerations dealing with issues of child custody, family support, and benefits. The resources listed below will help explain the complexities of a military divorce.The Military Divorce Handbook, 2nd edition (2011) by Mark E. SullivanThis comprehensive treatise includes chapters on topics such as child custody, family support, taxes, property, and The Service Members Civil Relief Act (SCRA). The author includes sample motions, forms, flowcharts and FAQ sections for each subject, as well as a glossary of terms and a table of cases. A companion CD-ROM is also included. This book may be borrowed from the Law School library, and can be found on the third floor under the call number KF535.S85 2011.The Complete QDRO Handbook: Dividing ERISA, Military, and Civil Service Pensions and Collecting Child Support, 3rd edition (2009) by David Clayton CarradPractitioners will be especially interested in Chapter 11 in this treatise covering military retirement pay, and Appendix M which explains the Uniformed Services Former Spouses Protection Act (USFSPA). Included are model orders, sample forms, checklists and a table of cases. The Complete QDRO Handbook may be borrowed from the Law School Library, and can be found on the third floor under the call number KF3512.C37 2009.State Side LegalState Side Legal is a free website funded by The Legal Services Corporation. Service members, spouses, and attorneys can browse the website by topic, “family law”, or enter a search term in the search box located in the middle of the page. Information is included on child custody and support, separations, annulments and divorces, and family support. The website offers an interactive forms page, as well as links to additional websites offering legal information and assistance to service members and their families.Military.com Military.com is a free membership website for service members and their support systems. The site offers information and community connections in areas such as education, careers, benefits and finance. For information on divorce, choose “Spouse” from the information bar at the top of the page. Choose “relationships”, then “divorce”, to locate articles such as Military Divorce: Why Where You File Matters and Military Divorce: Dividing Children, Pay and Pensions.
Practitioners may consider connecting their client with Ex-Pose, a non-profit volunteer organization of ex-spouses of military service members. Military spouses considering a divorce can contact Ex-pose for information on the divorce process, benefits, and pensions. Membership in Ex-pose will provide clients with quarterly newsletters informing them of proposed changes in the law.If you have any suggestions or requests for the topic of our next article, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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