Napa Bay Area Military Divorce Lawyers Attorneys

Military Divorce Attorneys

Providing Family Law Services to Servicemembers and Families

Divorces involving active and retired military service members often present an array of unique issues. Military divorce is familiar terrain for our legal team at Kaspar & Lugay, LLP, where you can count on experienced, effective representation in the resolution of your legal issues. Our military divorce attorneys can provide sound guidance for matters such as:

  • Child custody and child support issues
  • Questions regarding paternity
  • Spousal support / alimony
  • Division of assets, debt, and pensions

To schedule a case evaluation for your military divorce, call 415-789-5881 or contact us online.

Protecting Military Families? Relationships & Futures

We are prepared to represent servicemembers and their families stationed at any US military base throughout the state of California, as well as those deployed overseas in Iraq, Afghanistan or elsewhere. Our strengths specific to military families include:

  • In-depth knowledge of the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act and other related laws
  • Proven ability to resolve complex child custody and visitation matters in ways that do justice to our client?s parental rights as well as the best interests of children
  • Financial acumen that can be invaluable in unraveling the complexities of child and/or spousal support calculations when military compensation and benefits are involved
  • Technological resources that support clear communication by e-mail or other means wherever you, your spouse and children currently reside

Jurisdiction in a Military Divorce

One of the most prominent questions regarding military divorce is where you should file. This can be a complex question?especially when a servicemember is deployed. In most cases, the divorce action should be filed in the state where the two parties reside; this does not mean where the servicemember is currently stationed. For example, if the serviceman or woman is sent to another state, they may not be able to file for the divorce there as the court may view it as a temporary absence. However, the court may be able to argue that the serviceman or woman?s involvement in a case gives consent and gives recognition of local laws.

Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA)

The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) is a federal law designed to protect all of those who are in active military service from being sued. This does not stop a civil lawsuit from happening?such as a divorce action?but it does give the servicemember a chance to either delay the legal action or participate in a different way, such as through video conference.

Uniformed Services Former Spouses Protection Act (USFSPA)

There are countless issues that occur when a member of the military and his / her spouse choose to end their marriage that make it more complex than a civilian divorce. Most of these concerns are centered on eligibility for the commissary, exchange and health care benefits, as well as the servicemember?s retired pay. These are addressed by the Uniformed Services Former Spouses Protection Act (USFSPA), which helps divide pensions.

Under this law, the military disposable retired pay is treated as marital property and is thus eligible to be divided as such during the divorce proceedings. Local courts can treat it exactly as they would treat a civilian pension plan; for example, it could be divided during property settlement.

How the military retired pay is divided will be based entirely on state law ? The USFSPA includes the 10/10 rule. For this to be enforced during a divorce, the marriage in question must have lasted for at least 10 years during which military service was performed.

Survivor Benefit Plan Beneficiary Designation

Under the USFSPA, former spouses can also receive a designation as a Survivor Benefit Plan beneficiary, which allows retired members of the military to provide income to an individual in the event of their death. All retired servicemembers are enrolled in this program unless they specifically decline. In the event of a military divorce, the initial designation is terminated; however, there are instances where coverage can be continued. For example, it may be voluntarily continued, a court order may demand it, or it may just honor an agreement.

Former Spouses & Military Benefits

In certain instances, the former spouse of a servicemember may continue to receive certain benefits after a divorce. These benefits include commissary, exchange, and health care.

To qualify, the following must be true:

  • The servicemember served at least 20 years;
  • The marriage lasted at least 20 years; and
  • The marriage and period of service overlapped by at least 20 years.

Should the above qualifications be met, the former spouse would be known as a ?20/20/20 former spouse? and have full benefits. In instances where the first two bullet points are true, but the period of the marriage and service only overlapped by 15 years, the former spouse would be known as a ?20/20/15 former spouse? and would be entitled to receive the full military medical benefits for one year after the divorce. After the end of that transitional year, the spouse will be able to purchase a DOD-negotiated conversion health policy.

Kaspar & Lugay, LLP, Provides Legal Services to Members of Our Armed Forces

The entire legal team at our Marin-based firm is committed to helping serve those who serve us in the military and their families. Work with an attorney at our firm who is committed to fully understanding your goals and finding the best path to resolving your family law issues. Call 415-789-5881 or contact us online to schedule an initial consultation.

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Meet Your Attorneys

Brent Kaspar

Brent Kaspar

Managing Partner, Founder

Robert Sullivan

Robert Sullivan

Senior Associate

Arvin Lugay

Arvin Lugay

Partner, Founder

Karly Roberson

Karly Roberson

Associate

Your Consultation

Whether you’re reaching your breaking point or needing to modify a pre-existing judgment or agreement, your team at Kaspar & Lugay is ready to help you explore your options and develop a winning strategy.
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Luis Ramierz
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Update: Case Closed! I just want to say thank you to the whole Kasper and Lugay Team! Brent got The “W” in my case. They worked hard on my child custody battle and were super flexible with my payments! Anyone that’s going through a separation knows the stress courts can bring, but Brent and his team made sure to make everything fast and easy as possible for me! Thank You Again! I hope I never have to go through something like this again but if I ever do I know who to call!
Timothy Vinson
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I hired Brent Kaspar & his team to assist me in the dissolution of marriage from my wife of 9+ years and love for 14+ years. This is obviously not any type of experience anyone want to go through, however I wanted the best direct & logical approach as the emotional & financial sides of this transition are difficult enough. Brent impressed me immediately with his knowledge of the process as well as his experience with every local attorney, mediator, judge, and whomever else I may be faced with addressing.... I would want him on my side.
Brandy H.
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My case was not simple or easy. After 5 years, my ex-husband, decided to try and terminate all alimony on a 26 year marriage, as well as obtain funds from me....The process with Brent Kaspar and this entire group was very thorough as well as methodical to achieve the end goal. Although there is always a high amount of stress when dealing with any legal matter, these individuals as are excellent at their jobs, relentless on getting information, light hearted when need be, and strong willed when dealing with others legal nonsense. We were able to settle prior to court and obtain/protect what I intended.
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