Military Divorce in San Diego
Lawyers Helping Military Families Seek the Best Possible Solution
At Family Law San Diego, we have decades of professional experience handling divorce and family law issues that affect military families.
Our attorneys have received specific training in military divorce and our founding and principal attorney, Garrison Klueck, has spoken on the issue before other attorneys. The military divorce lawyers at our San Diego office understand the unique needs of individuals in the military and their loved ones.
Our Heroes' Discount
Many people are concerned about the costs of seeking legal help. At Family Law San Diego, we offer a heroes' discount. The discount gives 10 percent off attorney’s fees to people on active duty in any branch of the military. Veterans who have received honorable or general discharges and dependents of active duty military are eligible for a 5 percent discount. *Discount is to be requested upon initial retention with valid ID, and is not automatically applied.
How Do I FIle for Military Divorce?
The law generally allows the filing of a divorce to take place in the state where the husband or wife has a legal residence. Because of this, the person initiating the divorce will typically file in the state where he or she lives when it is the legal residence of one or both parties. This is hardly unique to military divorce. What is unique, however, is how the state handles the division of military pensions.
According to federal law, the state of the legal residence of the military member always has the power to divide the military pension in a divorce. Therefore, if the non-military spouse files for divorce in a state that is his or her legal residence and not the legal residence of the spouse, the court might not have the authority to divide the pension.
Where to File for a Military Divorce
For those in the military who are seeking a divorce, they have several options for which jurisdiction they may file. They can file for divorce in the state where the military service member claims legal residence, the state where the non-military spouse resides, or the state where the military service member is stationed. Our military divorce lawyer can analyze your situation and help you determine which jurisdiction you should choose.
How Long Does a Military Divorce Take?
Typically, when a spouse files for divorce, the other must file a formal response within a specific timeframe; however, for active duty service members, the Service Members Civil Relief Act (SCRA) allows them to request a stay, which essentially delays proceedings if their duties prevent them from participating in or responding to court action. This is so they can focus their attention on their duty and service.
Under this federal law, military personnel are allowed to delay legal proceedings during the time they are on active duty. They can also request a delay of 60 days after their enlistment is concluded. This means a divorce may take longer or be delayed because of the service member’s deployments or other duties.
The initial stay can last for at least 90 days, but the divorce cannot be postponed indefinitely.
Military Child Support
Child support is determined by state law and typically based on the total entitlements of the service member, which includes base pay, basic allowance for housing, basic allowance for subsistence, and any special pays. Once this amount is set by the court, only the court can change it.
For military families, it is crucial that the court understands the elements involved in a service member’s pay and to understand the potential for those amounts to change based on deployments, base transfers, and other factors.
Division of Military Pensions & Retirement
The Uniformed Services Former Spouses’ Protection Act (USFSPA) of 1982 provides financial protections to spouses of military members. If the marriage lasted 20 years or longer, overlapping with 20 years of military service, the non-military spouse will be entitled to a portion of retirement payments, pension, and other benefits.
Health CAre Coverage After a Military Divorce
The non-military spouse has two possible options after a divorce. First, they can opt for no-cost coverage under TRICARE if the marriage lasted for at least 20 years during the service member’s active service. Their other option is to buy conversion health coverage if they do not qualify for TRICARE. This is called the Continued Health Care Benefit Program (CHCBP).
Taking the Worry Out of Military Divorce in San Diego
Most people going through a military divorce have no idea what may happen. They worry about the legal system, and their pre-conceived notions are not always correct. At Family Law San Diego, we believe in talking honestly with clients, so that they know exactly what to expect when facing a family law conflict.
Many people face a great deal of intimidation from the other people involved in their family law conflict. Some are even told terrifying things, like how they may not see their kids again. We help our clients understand the law, so they know their rights and can have confidence that their attorney is helping them to achieve the best possible results.
We offer a free consultation where we discuss the matters you face and talk with you step-by-step about the best approaches. There are many myths and misconceptions that have developed around family law. During the consultation, we will help you separate truth from fiction so that you don't have to worry as much about negative outcomes.
Speak with Recognized Experts in Family Law
Our firm has a simple role: find out what our clients need, and fight for it with the fullest extent of our skill and experience. That is why our San Diego divorce lawyers are known for being understanding and kindhearted-we recognize that we are not representing a case; we are representing a person with unique needs and hopes.
- Inclusion in Super Lawyers®
- Perfect 10.0 rating on Avvo
- Board Certification in Family Law
- Best Overall Law Firm as voted by San Diego citizens
- 3 lawyers included in Best of the Bar in San Diego Business Journal
Our military divorce attorneys in San Diego are known for their compassion with clients and aggression in the courtroom. When you want lawyers who will have your back, turn to our firm.
As skilled litigators, mediators, and negotiators, our firm is prepared to handle any type of family law case.
Working together, we pull from our unique backgrounds and resources to achieve the best results possible.
We create tailor-made solutions to fit the unique needs of every client and help them move forward favorably.
We are committed to serving a diverse clientele, all the while protecting the interests and fulfilling the needs of clients.
I would absolutely recommend this firm!- Gerilyn H.
It was a joy to work with him and the entire firm!- Nina F.
We were successful, despite the opposing party's contention. Thank you again to Garrison Kleuck and his entire team.- Jennifer B.
I appreciate all the hard work everyone demonstrated during my legal issue, first and foremost Garrison!- Jean M.
It feels good to have you on our side.- Kevin