Military Divorce and Child Custody

In cases of military divorce and child custody, a number of unique challenges can arise due to the nature of military service itself. The possibility of future deployments, a dangerous occupation and other unpredictable elements of military service can all complicate matters – particularly for the service member.

If you or your spouse are a member of the military and divorce is on the horizon, it’s important to be aware of the issues that might crop up. Here are the most common challenges we’ve seen regarding military divorce and child custody:

  • Parenting/care plans Military or not, all divorcing parents must create a plan describing how they’ll arrange for their child’s care. Military parents should get even more detailed with these plans, stipulating how children will be cared for in the event of a future deployment or transfer.
  • Child relocation laws – In traditional divorces, custody agreements stipulate that a spouse can’t move the child out of state, as this would bar the other parent from seeing them. As military members are often transferred out of state or even out of the country, it’s important their custody agreements include additional provisions addressing these what-if situations.
  • Child support – Child support gets complicated when one parent is a military member. In most divorces, courts need only look at the parent’s annual salary to determine how much they should pay, but military payments aren’t so simple. Courts will factor in base pay, special pay, basic housing and subsistence allowances and more, using all these income streams to determine exactly how much the member should pay. Sometimes, child support will even change as the member’s pay and deployments fluctuate.

 

When it comes to military divorce and child custody, things can often get muddy. To ensure your children’s best interests are always protected, it’s important to engage a divorce attorney who has experience with these nuanced cases. Contact military divorce lawyer Jennifer Espronceda today to learn more.

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