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Like standard divorce cases, military pensions may be considered part of the marital estate to be divided in military divorce. However, there are specific regulations governing the division of military pension and other government retirement benefits subject to both state laws and military regulations. United States service members or their spouses should consult with an attorney who understands these requirements when considering military divorce.

The law firm of Lasiter & Jackson, represents U.S. military men and women and their spouses in a wide variety of family law matters. Our attorneys provide knowledgeable guidance throughout the process to help individuals achieve practical solutions that protect their goals for military pension division, division of other government benefits, survivor benefit issues, spousal maintenance issues and other concerns in military family law.

Dividing a Military Pension

Military divorce is governed by a combination of federal and state laws. Under the federal Uniformed Services Former Spouses’ Protection Act (USFSPA), state courts may determine whether military retirement benefits are considered sole or community property. If considered a part of the marital estate, the amount awarded to a military spouse is often determined by state laws and other factors, including:

  • The length of the marriage
  • The length of qualifying military service
  • The overlap of the marriage and military service

Understanding the 10/10 Rule

Many people mistakenly believe that the 10/10 rule of military pension division limits their ability to receive military pension division at all in the event of divorce. However, the 10/10 rule indicates that the Defense Financing and Accounting Service (DFAS) will pay the military spouse’s share of pension benefits if the length of the marriage coincided with at least 10 years of qualifying military service.

Therefore, the court may still award a portion of military pension to a military spouse as a part of a divorce settlement, regardless of the length of the marriage. Payment will simply come from the retiring spouse as opposed to the DFAS.

Ask Our Lawyers About Military Pension Division

Attorneys Nicole Lasiter and Stephanie Jackson will review your situation and help you understand your rights in military pension division. By providing the information and honest assessment you deserve, we seek to help you protect your interests by making informed decisions.

Contact our Phoenix law office to discuss your situation with an experienced attorney. We represent individuals throughout Maricopa County and Pinal County, Arizona.


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