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Federal And State Laws Impacting Military Divorce In Virginia

Divorce is nearly always a complicated process — a military divorce may be even more so. Issues of residency, length of a marriage, child custody and determining the jurisdiction of a military divorce are just a few of the factors which may come into play. 

There are many federal and state laws that can impact a military divorce. An experienced military divorce lawyer who lives and practices in areas with a large military presence such as Norfolk, Chesapeake and Virginia Beach can be of great assistance as you try to determine your best course of action. A few of these laws include:

  • The Uniformed Services Former Spouses’ Protection Act (USFSPA): The USFSPA  recognizes the right of state courts to distribute military retired pay to a spouse or former spouse and provides a method of enforcing these orders through the Department of Defense.
  • The Servicemembers’ Civil Relief Act (SCRA): The SCRA provides protections for military members as they enter active duty regarding issues including, but not limited to, rental agreements, security deposits, prepaid rent, eviction, installment contracts, credit card interest rates, mortgage interest rates, mortgage foreclosure, civil judicial proceedings, automobile leases, life insurance, health insurance and income tax payments. 
  • The Virginia Military Parents Equal Protection Act: This act gives the court the power to enter a temporary order modifying custody or visitation based on a parent’s deployment. When a deployed parent returns, the court holds an expedited hearing within 30 days. At this hearing, the non-deploying parent must show that the pre-existing custody or visitation order in effect before the deployment is no longer in the best interest of the children.

Darrell M. Harding has more than two decades of experience in the area of military divorce and can help clients in Norfolk, Chesapeake and Virginia Beach with these and other issues.

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