Category:Military Divorce


Phase-In Of Concurrent Receipt Nears Completion

Posted on January 7th, 2013, by Livesay & Myers, P.C. in Family Law, Military Divorce. Comments Off on Phase-In Of Concurrent Receipt Nears Completion

Beginning in 2014, retired servicemembers eligible for Concurrent Retirement and Disability Pay (CRDP) will no longer have to waive any portion of their military retirement in order to receive VA disability compensation. The CRDP program, enacted in 2004, allowed military retirees with a VA disability rating of 50% of higher, and 20 or more years of military service, to receive both military retired pay and VA disability compensation at the same time. This has been commonly referred to as the “concurrent receipt” of disability pay and retired pay.

Before creation of the CRDP, military retirees were forbidden by law to receive both military retirement benefits and VA disability compensation. Parties seeking disability benefits were required to waive an equivalent portion of their military retired pay.

The CRDP program was structured to phase in the disability payments over a ten-year period. In 2013, eligible retirees will … Read More »


Military Regulations and Family Support

Posted on December 5th, 2012, by Livesay & Myers, P.C. in Family Law, Military Divorce. Comments Off on Military Regulations and Family Support

In any separation, divorce or custody dispute, a party might seek financial support. It may be a request for spousal support to get back on their feet. It may be a request for child support. Whatever the type of family support sought, there are two basic strategies for resolving the dispute: negotiating an agreement or litigating a case through the courts. If one party is a military servicemember, however, there may be alternate methods available to settle these issues.

Each service branch has regulations requiring servicemembers to support their families in the event of a separation. The service branch involved can have a great deal of impact when deciding to pursue support through the servicemember’s command. Some branches, like the Army, issue very specific regulations, spelling out the exact dollar amount they will provide, the length of time it will be … Read More »


Survivor Benefit Plan Coverage in Virginia Divorce

Posted on October 29th, 2012, by James Livesay in Family Law, Military Divorce. Comments Off on Survivor Benefit Plan Coverage in Virginia Divorce

Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP) coverage is a benefit commonly awarded to former spouses in military divorce cases in Virginia, particularly where the spouse will be receiving a significant share of the servicemember’s military retired pay.

Survivor Benefit Plan – The Basics

What is SBP? SBP is an annuity plan that, after the death of a retired servicemember, pays a monthly sum to a beneficiary designated by the servicemember. SBP payments begin at the death of the retired servicemember, when the servicemember’s retired pay would normally cease. SBP coverage therefore permits a servicemember to continue to provide income to a named beneficiary upon the servicemember’s death. SBP coverage is analogous to life insurance in that it provides servicemembers security that their dependents will be cared for when they are gone.

The Defense Finance and Accounting Services (DFAS) automatically deducts the monthly premiums for SBP coverage … Read More »


Benefits Of Former Military Spouses Part Three: Continued Health Care Benefit Program

Posted on September 25th, 2012, by Livesay & Myers, P.C. in Family Law, Military Divorce. Comments Off on Benefits Of Former Military Spouses Part Three: Continued Health Care Benefit Program

In Parts One and Two of this series, we looked at the requirements a former spouse must meet to retain medical coverage through the Tricare program. A 20/20/20 spouse would be eligible for lifetime coverage under Tricare (in addition to other benefits), while a 20/20/15 spouse would be eligible for transitional Tricare coverage for one year. Former spouses who do not qualify as at least 20/20/15 spouses are not eligible for Tricare coverage at all, but they are not left without options.

The Continued Health Care Benefit Program (CHCBP), enacted in 10 U.S.C. 1078a, is available for former spouses who cannot qualify for Tricare coverage under the 20/20/20 or 20/20/15 Rules. The CHCBP offers a COBRA-style program that allows any former spouses who were covered under Tricare on the day before entry of a final divorce decree to pay for continued medical … Read More »


Benefits Of Former Military Spouses Part Two: The “20/20/15” Former Spouse

Posted on September 17th, 2012, by Livesay & Myers, P.C. in Family Law, Military Divorce. Comments Off on Benefits Of Former Military Spouses Part Two: The “20/20/15” Former Spouse

In Part One of this series, we looked at the 20/20/20 Rule and the requirements a former spouse must meet to retain full military benefits and privileges upon divorce from a servicemember. In the event a former spouse cannot qualify under the 20/20/20 Rule, he or she may still be eligible to retain a portion of their military benefits as they transition from being a military spouse to a former spouse.

To qualify for transitional military benefits, a former spouse must satisfy the requirements of 10 U.S.C. § 1072(2)(G), more commonly referred to as the “20/20/15 Rule.” The 20/20/15 rule requires the former spouse to show three things: first, that the servicemember put in at least 20 years of creditable service; second, that the parties’ marriage lasted at least 20 years; and third, that the period of the marriage overlapped the period … Read More »


Benefits of Former Military Spouses

Posted on September 12th, 2012, by Livesay & Myers, P.C. in Family Law, Military Divorce. Comments Off on Benefits of Former Military Spouses

Most spouses of active duty servicemembers contribute greatly to the marriage. They stay behind and take care of the children when the Marine, Sailor, Airman, Soldier or Coast Guardsman is deployed. They support the member through advancement in rank. They uproot their lives every few years as the family moves from duty station to duty station.

The select few members that make a career out of their service are rewarded with monthly retired pay for the rest of their lives and additional benefits as retired servicemembers. Should the marriage continue, the spouse (and family) will share in those benefits. If the marriage ends, however, what—if anything—will the member’s former spouse receive?

20/20/20 Spouses

Some former spouses will be entitled to retain full benefits: medical coverage through Tricare, access to the military exchange, base privileges and commissary privileges. Not surprisingly, for a spouse to retain full … Read More »


Benefits Of Former Military Spouses Part One: The “20/20/20” Former Spouse

Posted on September 12th, 2012, by Livesay & Myers, P.C. in Family Law, Military Divorce. Comments Off on Benefits Of Former Military Spouses Part One: The “20/20/20” Former Spouse

Most spouses of active duty servicemembers contribute greatly to the marriage. They stay behind and take care of the children when the Marine, Sailor, Airman, Soldier or Coast Guardsman is deployed. They support the member through advancement in rank. They uproot their lives every few years as the family moves from duty station to duty station.

The select few members that make a career out of their service are rewarded with monthly retired pay for the rest of their lives and additional benefits as retired servicemembers. Should the marriage continue, the spouse (and family) will share in those benefits. If the marriage ends, however, what – if anything – will the member’s former spouse receive? This is the first in a series of posts that will take a closer look at the benefits available to former spouses of servicemembers.

Some former spouses will be … Read More »


The 10-Year Rule in Military Divorce Cases

Posted on August 9th, 2012, by Livesay & Myers, P.C. in Family Law, Military Divorce. Comments Off on The 10-Year Rule in Military Divorce Cases

The so-called “10/10 Rule” (or 10-Year Rule) is a source of confusion for many individuals when dealing with a military divorce. Some believe it requires a couple to be married for 10 years before a spouse has a right to any portion of a servicemember’s military retirement. Others believe it requires the parties be married for ten years during active duty service before a spouse is entitled to any portion of military retirement. Still others believe that service must be for 10 consecutive years of service while married before a spouse earns a right to receive a division of military retired pay.

It may surprise you to learn that each of these beliefs is wrong.

The 10/10 Rule has nothing to do with a state court’s authority to treat military retired pay as a marital asset to be divided upon divorce. Even … Read More »


Supreme Court May Review Treatment Of VA Disability Pay In Support Cases

Posted on August 5th, 2012, by Livesay & Myers, P.C. in Family Law, Military Divorce. 11 comments

Disabled veteran Peter Barclay has petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court to consider whether a veteran’s disability pay should be included as income for spousal support purposes. The Oregon District Court that entered the divorce between Barclay and his wife in 2010 ordered Barclay to pay $1,000 per month in spousal support based on his income received from his VA benefits and Social Security Disability Insurance. Barclay appealed this matter through Oregon’s state courts, and the Oregon Supreme Court upheld the trial court’s decision.

The case raises issues under Title 38 of the United States Code, which deals with Veterans’ benefits. Section 5301 of Title 38 makes VA disability benefits immune “from taxation, claims of creditors, attachment, levy and seizure.” What this Section does not clearly state, however, is whether disability benefits are also immune from inclusion in a veteran’s income for … Read More »


Think Twice About Handling Your Separation and Divorce Without An Attorney

Posted on June 18th, 2009, by James Livesay in Divorce, Family Law, Military Divorce. Comments Off on Think Twice About Handling Your Separation and Divorce Without An Attorney

For most uncontested divorces, the parties will need to execute a property settlement agreement, commonly known as a “PSA,” settlement agreement, or simply a separation agreement. With the growing availability on the internet of forms and samples for such documents, some people feel confident in drafting an agreement without the assistance of an attorney. These agreements may turn out to be valid and work for some people, but may result in financial disaster for others.

Language in a separation agreement may seem to have one meaning, but may have an entirely different legal meaning. As an example: John and Ellen sign a separation agreement stating they will “share” physical and legal custody of the child. However, Ellen keeps the children most of the time. Without knowing anything else about this agreement, Ellen may have opened the door for a smaller amount … Read More »


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