Military Divorce Law
Divorces with members of our country's armed forces often involve unique challenges. Specific state and federal laws govern the unique issues intrinsic to Oregon military divorces and the impact they will have on service members' lives. The following are several basic issues that our attorneys understand and effectively address in cases involving military divorces.
Protection from Oregon Divorce Proceedings. The Soldiers and Sailors Civil Relief Act protects active duty military members from being found in "default" for failing to respond to an Oregon divorce petition. This federal protection for active military members was put in place to recognize that military members might be deployed overseas or otherwise unable to respond to Oregon divorce proceedings in the same timeline that a traditional civilian might do.
Parenting Plans for Military Families Present Unique Challenges. Deployment and transfer are realities for U.S. military members. When children are involved, deployment and transfer present complications when crafting a parenting plan that makes sense for the parents and is in the children's best interests. Special consideration and flexibility needs to be given to account for the fact that a parent may be involuntarily transferred or deployed far away from their children.
Military Pensions Must Be Carefully Considered. Under Oregon law, the court divides "marital assets" equitably between divorcing spouses. Although military pensions can be considered marital assets, federal law may supersede and restrict Oregon's authority to divide military pensions. Detailed knowledge of both Oregon and federal law governing military retirement are essential to providing quality representation to our clients in the armed forces.
Military Pay Can Be Drastically Affected by Marital and Dependent Status. Compensation for soldiers and sailors is different than for civilian employees. A service member is often entitled to additional pay in the form of a Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH). The BAH is often highly dependent on a service member's marital status and number of dependents. It is important to consider the effect of a divorce on the member's BAH, and the inevitable effect that it will have on the service member's ability to provide support for their former spouse and children.
We are proud to have a thorough understanding of the issues that will arise in Oregon military divorces. It is our goal to use our experience and knowledge to represent families of our nation's military with compassion, understanding, and the zealous advocacy that they so deserve.