A Military Divorce Attorney Understands the Complexities of Non-Civilian Divorce
A military divorce has several unique rules and procedures that differ from a civilian divorce, such as the division of military pension plans and determining child custody when a parent is stationed out of state or overseas. At Rombro & Associates, a military divorce attorney can provide you with the aggressive litigation you need. With our Manhattan Beach, CA, office near LA Air Force Base, we have handled these unique cases in the past and can work with you to ensure your rights are protected throughout the process. We specialize in family law and we urge you to call our law firm today to discuss your case with one of our attorneys.
Military Divorce in California
Filing for a military divorce in California is slightly different than filing for a civilian divorce. First, if your spouse is on active duty when you file for divorce and is unable to attend a court date due to service obligations, the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act allows for the suspension of proceedings for up to 60 days after active duty has ended. If this right is waived, however, divorce proceeding can move forward.
A military divorce has several unique rules and procedures that differ from a civilian divorce, such as the division of military pension plans and determining child custody when a parent is stationed out of state or overseas.
In California, grounds for a military divorce are virtually the same as they are in a civilian divorce, and both parties typically claim irreconcilable differences. Choosing whether or not to file for divorce within the state, however, can be more complicated. If you want to file in California, one or both parties must either reside in the state or be stationed here.
California is a community property state, so almost all assets and property accumulated throughout the marriage will be considered in the divorce as “community.” This means that any land or vehicles purchased, joint bank accounts, and other assets will be divided 50/50 (rather than an equitable distribution).
Considerations in a Military Divorce
There are a number of considerations that must be addressed in a military divorce that do not affect civilian divorces. In addition to California’s residency requirements, we must also consider:
- Division of assets, particularly military retirement benefits and spousal support obligations
- Years of service and the length of marriage and its impact on medical benefits
- Child custody arrangements, especially for active duty military personnel who may be stationed out od state or overseas
- Child support and determining if assistance from the military in distributing these payments is appropriate
How the Process Works
After a petition for divorce is filed by one spouse, it must be personally delivered to the other spouse. In cases where that spouse is on active duty and is unable to be served in person, the proceedings may be suspended. Otherwise, he or she may file a response, and the process can continue. In cases involving children, domestic violence, or other issues, either party may wish to request a temporary order for child custody or a restraining or military protection order.
During the discovery process, both parties provide and exchange all relevant documents and information. This will include detailed lists of separate and community property, as well as documentation regarding income and expenses. Once this is complete, the attorneys will work to come up with a resolution. If an agreement is made, both parties and their attorneys will sign this contract. If they cannot reach an agreement, the case will go to trial, where the details will be decided by a judge.
Contact a Military Divorce Attorney
If you or your spouse is in the military and you are considering a divorce, you need to speak with an experienced military divorce attorney. Contact Rombro & Associates online today to schedule a consultation. You can also speak to a member of our team by calling our law office at (310) 545-1900.
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