Those who are considering a divorce are likely aware of the fact the process is a legal proceeding that covers many issues, potentially including asset division, child custody arrangements, child support, and spousal support. Where one spouse is an active member in the military, it may be necessary to navigate additional issues. One such example is the implication of the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA).
Serving in the military is an extraordinary sacrifice. Not only do service members put their lives in danger, they also can spend long stretches of time away from their families.
Serving in the military is no small feat. It is stressful, dangerous and exhausting. Members of the military often experience incredible emotional trauma, not to mention the strain of being away from friends and family for lengthy periods of time.
There is no shortage of challenges facing military families, between the stress of moving around so often, the fears associated with deployments, and the pain of physical injuries and mental illness.
The U.S. Supreme Court recently ruled on a dispute over military benefits in a post-judgment military divorce matter between a 20-year Air Force vet and his ex-wife. It found that, once the vet had waived part of his retirement pay for disability benefits, his exspouse was no longer entitled to a part of that pay.
In the recent New Jersey Appellate Division decision of Ortiz v. Ortiz, the Court ruled that qualification for VA disability may justify modification of child support and alimony obligations. In the matter Ortiz v. Ortiz, the party paying support achieved a 40 percent VA disability rating and the Court found this sufficient to open the case up for review and a potential downward modification of child support and spousal support.