The divorce process, whether you are the one who wants out or not, can be an emotional rollercoaster. Sometimes it even gets chaotic, as you might fail to agree on who gets custody of the kids or how to share your property. Although divorce in the military is no different in terms of the legal process, it may become more complicated when one or both spouses are on active duty in far-flung areas or overseas. To make your work easier, you should hire the services of a military divorce attorney. The roles of the attorney include:
The military attorney should educate you on the divorce process
It is the role of attorney to help you and your spouse to understand how the divorce process works. The Uniformed Former Spouses Protection Act (UFSPA) addresses issues such as child and spousal support. The attorney should educate you on how such laws can influence the outcome of your divorce. The divorce lawyer should be ready to provide you with answers to any questions that you might be having.
The divorce lawyer should help you in preparing the divorce agreements
Sometimes it is in the best interest of the divorcing partners to work out a divorce agreement, instead of engaging in lengthy and costly court battles. Although divorce agreements don’t always need the input of an attorney, many divorcing military families without sufficient legal knowledge turn to their attorneys for professional help.
In this case, the attorney should help you in craft an agreement from scratch or review the proposed ones while ensuring that all the relevant legal provisions are included and your rights are not violated. Since the UFSPA doesn’t provide a formula for dividing the military pension, the attorney should help you reach an agreement on how to share your properly fairly and in accordance with the state laws. If the agreements have to be submitted to a family judge for further review, it is the attorney’s job to ensure this happens in a timely manner.
The family lawyer should represent you in the divorce trials
When couples fail to reach an out-of-court compromise, it means they have chosen to let the family court determine the outcome of the divorce. If your case goes to a full trial, then your family lawyer has a duty to represent your best interests in court and ensure that you receive a favorable outcome. The lawyer should attend the court proceedings, file motions, prepare financial disclosures, prepare witnesses for depositions and, where necessary, negotiate with the legal counsel of your spouse.
In conclusion, divorce can be devastating for military families, especially because the experience can negatively affect the ability of spouses on active duty to serve. Unfortunately, sometimes divorce is the only way out of a dysfunctional marriage. To have an easy ride you should arm yourself with a skilled military divorce lawyer.