Military Divorce

Are you a military service member considering a divorce? Or have you been served divorce papers from your military spouse? No matter what your situation, our Colorado Springs divorce attorneys at Knies, Helland & McPherson can help.

All three partners have extensive experience in military family law. Jennifer Knies is a graduate of West Point and a retired judge advocate. Kelly McPherson is a graduate of the Air Force Academy and prior Air Force investigator. Jennifer Helland has published articles on the new military retirement system and is a well-known resource for Colorado Springs attorneys on military issues such as GI Bill benefits. Knies, Helland & McPherson also offers discounts to military and law enforcement families.

Military divorce isn’t necessarily more complicated than a regular civilian divorce; however, certain rules and requirements do apply. Our partners at Knies, Helland & McPherson will work with you to navigate this confusing, challenging time as smoothly as possible. At Knies, Helland & McPherson, it is our goal to work with you to create a plan of action that is unique to you and your situation so that you can move forward.

Knies, Helland & McPherson takes each couple’s unique situation into consideration and offers solutions that are personalized and effective. Our firm handles traditional military divorces, but we also provide divorce coaching if all you need is guidance and direction. No matter where you are in the process, we will make sure that both of you take all of the steps and complete all of the paperwork necessary to finalize your divorce as quickly as possible.

As tempting as it may be to weather this storm alone, don’t do it. There is too much at stake – fiscally and emotionally – to risk missing an important step or document. At Knies, Helland & McPherson, our attorneys will walk through this experience with you with discretion and care. We make it our priority to help you have a better future, even if that does involve a separation from your spouse.

Call today at 719-635-8499 to schedule your consultation so we can discuss your needs and create your personalized course of action.

What Is Military Divorce?

Military divorce is the dissolution of a marriage that involves a military service member. While military personnel are really no different than civilians getting divorce, certain circumstances often come into play in a military divorce. For example, one of you may be on active duty in a remote location, which can make the process take longer. With that in mind, it’s important that you work with an attorney who knows the ins and outs of the laws regarding military divorce so that you can get yours finalized as quickly as possible.

Divorce law regarding military personnel is governed by both state and federal regulations. For example, federal law may dictate where a divorcing couple ends up in court as well as the way in which any military pension is divided. Alternatively, state law may determine how alimony or spousal support is issued.

It is important to note that active-duty service members are protected from divorce proceedings in some cases. The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) provides that U.S. military personnel cannot be sued or begin divorce proceedings while actively serving or for 60 days after active duty. This Act is designed to enable service members to focus their time and energy to defending the Nation no matter what is going on at home.

What Are Some Statistics About Military Divorce?

It’s quite evident across the United States that divorce rates are on the rise. Whereas divorce was once unheard of, now a significant number of marriages end in divorce. Even so, many people are shocked by the statistics of divorce among military personnel.

Currently there are roughly 1.4 million men and women serving in the military. Of those 1.4 million, roughly 1.2 million are male and 202,000 are female. Among those individuals, there are four main types of marital statuses, including civilian marriages, joint marriages, single with children, and single with no children. Roughly 50 percent of military personnel are in civilian marriages. As of 2000, the enlisted divorce rate was roughly 2.9 percent. However, in 2011, the rate of divorce had risen to 4.1 percent.

With those statistics, it’s important that you know that you are not alone in this. Not only are there other individuals facing the same challenge as you are, but we at Knies, Helland & McPherson are here to walk through the process with you. We’ll support you along the way and help you come up with a personalized solution strategy to help you walk away from the process with as much dignity as you deserve.

How Long Do Military Divorces Take?

The military divorce process, like any other divorce proceeding, is lengthy, but it is doable. In some cases, the process may be extended if you or your spouse is on active duty. Likewise, you are required to go through a period of separation in most states prior to an official divorce proceeding.

During the separation and divorce process, the way you conduct yourself can significantly impact your military career. For example, if you are engaged in an active relationship or dating, you could face military disciplinary proceedings.

Our divorce attorneys are knowledgeable of the unique rules and regulations surrounding military divorce and will advise you how to proceed to avoid any unnecessary and unfounded allegations. We’re not here to just represent you in court. We want to make sure that you are taken care of on a personal level, too.

Do I Need a Lawyer for Military Divorce?

Like with any civilian divorce, you can complete the paperwork necessary to divorce your spouse on your own, but it’s not always advisable. Trying to understand all of the legal issues surrounding a divorce is hard enough, but especially so if your case is complicated by certain military related issues. There is too much for you to lose, including money, benefits, and even custody, if you risk going it alone. At the very least, work with one of our attorneys to make sure that you have completely and accurately filled out all of the paperwork to finalize your divorce.

What Are the Risks of Do-It-Yourself Military Divorce?

The risks associated with trying to do it yourself are many. Going it alone will not only involve more headache, it could also result in:

  • Extended length of the process due to incomplete or inaccurate paperwork
  • Mistakes in child support calculation
  • Inaccurate property descriptions and/or retirement fund reporting
  • Vague and incomplete parental and custody plans

Trying to tackle the paperwork and decision-making process of a divorce on your own is not only emotionally taxing, but it is also mentally draining. Allowing one of our qualified professionals to handle the legal side of it for you will help you focus on the emotional healing that you need during this period.

Contact us today to have a qualified divorce attorney from Knies, Helland & McPherson handle the complicated legal process of a military divorce for you.

CONTACT US TODAY TO GET STARTED

At Knies, Helland & McPherson, we partner with you to come up with a customized solution that meets your individual needs and goals.