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You need an experienced hand to handle military divorces.  Military divorces have unique rules regarding residency requirements for filing for divorce, certain legal protections for the military member and emergency court orders pertaining to child support and division of military pensions.  Jamie L. Anderson has assembled a team of private investigators, forensic accountants, expert witnesses and property analysts who can handle your case whether it be a simple dissolution or a complex multi-state custody battle.  Whether you are a career soldier who is concerned about retirement pay and benefits or a young service member with young children or a deployed, we can make the process of divorce a manageable situation.  We are proud of your service and are proud to have served Wright Patterson Air Force Base since 1995.  Find out more by visiting www.OhioDivorceAttorney.com, or by calling our office for a free consultation at (937)879-9542.

Here are some common issues related to a military divorce.

Service Members Civil Relief Act: Under the Service Members Civil Relief Act military members are protected from lawsuits including divorce proceedings so they can “devote their entire energy to the defense needs of the Nation.” A court can delay legal proceedings for the time that the service member is on active duty and for up to 60 day following active duty.  The Service Members’ Civil Relief Act is the amended version of the Soldier and Sailors Civil Relief Act of 1940 (SSCRA), a federal law governing (and protecting) military personnel from certain applications of civil law.

Service of Process (Active-Duty Military):  An active duty member of the armed services must be personally served with a summons and a copy of the divorce action to trigger jurisdiction of an Ohio court.  Without such service, the matter cannot proceed. In cases of an uncontested divorce, the active duty service member can file a waiver affidavit acknowledging the divorce action.  Grounds for a divorce are the same for civilian and service members alike.  These matters should be discussed in detail with an experienced divorce attorney.

Residency and Filing Requirements: Typically, a military divorce in Ohio requires that either, a)  You or your spouse must reside in Ohio and/or b)  You or your spouse must be stationed in Ohio.  If you are a typical civilian couple who is divorcing, you must primarily be concerned with the laws of the state in which you are divorcing.You may incur benefits or detriments by filing in Ohio or another state.  Again, the guiding hand of an experienced lawyer should be sought.

Uniformed Services Former Spouse’s Protection Act (USFSPA): The USFSPA applies to all active duty, reserve/guard, and retired military, the U.S. Coast Guard, and members of the U.S. Public Health Service (USPHS) and the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).  USFSPA works in conjunction with Ohio property division laws to govern how military retirement benefits are calculated and divided upon divorce.  The USFSPA is the governing body that authorizes a direct payment of a portion of a military retirees pay to the former spouse.  Thce federal laws will not divide and distribute any of the military members retirement to the spouse unless they have been married 10 years or longer while the member has been active duty military.  Divorcing before the service member has attained 20 years of creditable service for retired pay purposes can be detrimental to the non-military spouse.    The Voluntary Separation Incentive (VSI) is a retirement benefit.  VSIs and Special Separation Benefits (SSBs) are two ways the military eliminates officers whose careers are not advancing.  These complicated federal laws are just some of the reasons you should consult with an attorney if you find yourself facing a military divorce.

Child Support and the Service Member:  Military members have a duty to provide support for their children, as well as their spouses, so their wages may be garnished in order to ensure the payment of proper support.  In Ohio, both child support and spousal support/alimony awards may not exceed 60% of a military member’s pay and allowances. The normal Ohio child support guidelines, worksheets and schedules are used to determine the proper amount of child support to be paid.

If you think that Jamie L. Anderson is the right choice, please call for a free initial consultation at (937) 879-9542 or via E-mail.  Jamie is located just off I-675 near both the Mall at Fairfield Commons and Wright Patterson Air Force Base. They represent clients throughout the Miami Valley including Dayton, Springfield, Fairborn, Beavercreek, Xenia, Wilmington, and other communities in the counties of Greene, Montgomery, Clark, Fayette and Clinton. Hourly rates are very competitive and the firm accepts payment plans and all major credit cards.