Provided by Belli, Weil & Grozbean, P.C.
By: Stuart H. Grozbean
We often get
questions on military pensions and whether there is any truth
that if a couple has not been married for 10 years the spouse is
excluded for sharing in the pension.
The answer is
YES. but only if you read the fine print and look at the case
A review of USFSPA provides
military retirement payments may not be made "under this
section" to a former spouse who was not married to the service
member for at least 10 years. 10 U.S.C. Sec. 1408(d)(2). The
10-year requirement applies only to military retirement pay paid
directly by the military finance center to the former spouse.
Virginia appellate courts have stated while a
10-year marriage is a condition for direct payment, failure to
meet the 10-year requirement does not bar the court's division
of a spouse's military retirement pay. Cook v. Cook , 18
Va. App. 726, 446 S.E.2d 894 (1994).
Court have held that even if the military personnel has not
served 20 years and is not fully vested, does not mean that the
spouse is excluded. Like any pension, the military pension is a
deferred compensation and can be includable for consideration in
a divorce. Similarly,
The marital estate
for purposes of dividing the pension, includes only that portion
of a military pension which is earned during the marriage.
pensions are tricky and you need to talk to a qualified domestic
relations attorney who can better assist you.
Call Belli, Weil & Grozbean for a free
consultation. 301 738-5700
Information provided by:
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