A significant amount of Virginia divorce cases are filed by persons rendering service in the military due to the large number of military personnel stationed in Northern Virginia.
The process of legally ending a marriage is termed a divorce. The process of obtaining a divorce in Virginia is complicated and it becomes more complicated if one of the parties to the divorce is a military service member. Be aware that the procedure for a military divorce is different in different states and the place of filing the divorce, distribution of marital property and the benefits that can be granted differ in each state.
Uniformed Services Former Spouses Protection Act (USFSPA) states that the place of filing of a military divorce is the place of residence of the military member. For a military divorce, the provision of compelling the filing of divorce at the residence of the military member is significant.
Uniformed Services Former Spouses Protection Act (USFSPA) provides that the only state that has jurisdiction to divide military pension is the place of residence of the military member. In cases where Virginia is not the official residence of the military member, the party filing for divorce may file in Virginia if he/she has lived in Virginia for 6 months.
The two types of divorce in Virginia include fault divorce and no-fault divorce.
A no-fault divorce is easier to file and is less expensive. If you are filing a no-fault divorce in Virginia, a separation agreement is usually filed with the divorce action. If the parties seeking a no-fault military divorce have minor children, the required separation period is 12 months.
If the parties have no minor children, the separation period to be proven is 6 months. Only after the expiry of this time period, can the divorce be filed in Virginia. If you have decided to proceed with a divorce in Virginia, you need to analyze what ground of divorce in Virginia is applicable to you.
The help of an experienced Virginia divorce attorney may be your best choice in terms of preparing pleadings based on fault grounds. Fault grounds of divorce are adultery, cruelty, desertion, etc.
People applying for divorce in Virginia are not aware that homosexual acts are also recognized as a valid ground of divorce in Virginia. If you are someone who is filing for divorce based on the ground of homosexual activity, you should be aware that a mere allegation of homosexuality is not sufficient for a divorce.
A divorce ground of homosexuality that has occurred within the last five years should be proven by clear and convincing evidence. If your divorce ground is cruelty, then you should submit evidence that shows extreme violence that has caused physical and emotional harm. If your spouse has been convicted of a felony that has resulted in one-year imprisonment, that itself is a ground for your military divorce in Virginia.
Division of property is often the most problematic aspect in a military divorce. A Non-military spouse is entitled to 50 percent of marital share in the pension based on the duration of military service and based on the number of years of marriage.
To calculate the share of the non-military spouse, the court calculates the non-military spouse’s share from date of marriage or from the date the spouse enrolled in the military whichever occurred and ends on the date of separation.
The surviving benefit plan (SBP) is another important aspect of military divorce. In cases involving military divorce, the surviving non-military spouse is entitled to 55 % of the survival benefit plan. In some cases, the military spouse may decide to retain the benefit for a potential future spouse.
What is the IRA savings account for a common man’s divorce is the thrift savings plan for a military divorce. In military divorces, you should also know how the court deals with the question of how thrift savings plan is to be divided between the couple.
In Virginia dealing with military divorces is relatively common for some attorneys because they have gained valuable experience by handling a number of Virginia military divorce cases. To try and obtain a favourable order in a military divorce seek the assistance of an Virginia military divorce attorney who has several years of experience in such matters.
Mr. Sris has helped numerous clients get through a military divorce in Northern Virginia.