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What Happens to Military Benefits in a Divorce?

Military benefits are handled differently than “civilian benefits” in a divorce. It is imperative that any dissolution agreement involving military benefits complies with the United States Office of Personnel Management (OPM) guidelines.  If for any reason an asset/benefit division pertaining to military benefits does not comply with said guidelines, it is unlikely that the federal government will co-operate in transferring military benefits from either an activity duty member, or a veteran, to a civilian.

One important factor to consider is the 10/10 rule. The Uniformed Services Former Spouses’ Protection Act (USFSPA) is the legislation that allows servicemembers’ ex-spouses to obtain benefits. The 10/10 rule requires that the parties were married at least ten (10) years which overlapped with at least ten (10) years of military service. If the 10/10 rule does not apply, then military benefits will not be paid out through the Defense Finance and Accounting Service (DFAS) and the servicemember would have to pay his or her prior spouse directly.

It is imperative to find a VA accredited attorney if you are a servicemember, or a spouse of a servicemember, and you are going through a divorce, so that you can ensure everything is handled appropriately.

Our firm is here to help make things easier for you, so that you can take back control of your life. Attorney Shari-Lynn Cuomo Shore has significant experience with the division of military benefits and is a VA accredited attorney.  Ever argue with a woman? Let Wolf & Shore Law Group go to work for you and take the “big and bad” out of your family law matter so that it becomes a “Shore thing.” Please contact us today for a confidential consultation. Click here, call us at 203.745.315, or email us at

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