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Denham Family Law, APC
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Taking On The Complexities Of Military Divorce

When it comes to divorce, there are special considerations for service members. That's why it is important to seek the expertise of a San Diego military attorney. Being married to a retired service member has given me unique perspective on the challenges involved in military divorces, particularly when one spouse is deployed and military pensions are a part of marital assets.

The first step toward getting a military divorce in California is to ensure that you meet one of the following residency requirements listed under the California divorce code:

  • At least one spouse must have been residing in California for a period of six months prior to when the divorce is filed
  • At least one of the spouses must be a member of the U.S. Armed Forces stationed within the state

Differences And Exceptions Surrounding Military Divorces

California has an option for default judgment in divorce. Default judgment means that if one spouse does not respond to the other's petition for divorce, a judge can still legally dissolve the marriage. There is an exception to this rule when the spouse who did not initiate the divorce is deployed.

The Servicemember Civil Relief Act ("SCRA"), formerly known as the Soldiers' and Sailors' Civil Relief Act, is a federal law enacted in 2003, that restricts or limits actions against military personnel currently serving on active duty. The Act was designed to allow active duty service members, and especially those who are deployed, to devote their entire energy to the defense needs of the country.

The purpose of this law is so that members of the military do not come back from deployment to discover, to their surprise, that they are no longer married or there is a judgment against them

While California divorce laws are the same when one or both spouses are in the military, there are nuances in military divorce cases that can make these proceedings more complicated.

To ensure that your divorce is handled properly and that you get what you are entitled to in a divorce settlement, it is important to rely on a certified family law specialist (CFLS), who has experience with military divorces and the skill to help ensure the best possible outcome in your case.

I can help you navigate the unique challenges associated with these cases. Call 619-777-8190 or send me an email for a free consultation at my Chula Vista law office.


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