Dividing military retired pay in divorce

Q: After 17 years I divorced my hus­band. He was in the Air National Guard and worked for them in a civil­ian capac­ity. I was awarded half of his mil­i­tary retire­ment. His attor­ney did the QDRO incor­rectly. I found out recently that he retired last year. I have tried to find out how to con­tact the plan admin­is­tra­tor, only to come to a dead end. Can you please send me infor­ma­tion on how to fix the QDRO and get in touch with the plan admin­is­tra­tor? I am also a vet­eran, but did not stay in till retire­ment because we had children.

–Cyn­thia, Brick, New Jersey

A: The Defense Finance and Account­ing Ser­vice (DFAS) is respon­si­ble for mil­i­tary retire­ment. You can con­tact them at 1–888-332‑7411. They should be able to let you know if your divorce decree is drafted within the guide­lines pro­vided by The Uni­formed Ser­vices For­mer Spouses’ Pro­tec­tion Act. Since A Qual­i­fied Domes­tic Rela­tions Order is not used to divide mil­i­tary retire­ment pay you may need to enlist the help of an attor­ney to get things right. Here is a doc­u­ment enti­tled Guid­ance on Divid­ing Mil­i­tary Retired Pay from the DFAS web­site. It might be help­ful to your attor­ney. Good luck.

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2 responses to “Dividing military retired pay in divorce”

  1. If I am a spouse mar­ried to a mil­i­tary mem­ber on 9-18-1993 and she retired on 8-20-2003, would this qual­ify for the 10/10 rule? If not, she also was on inac­tive reserve for 6 years after her retire­ment. Does this count toward the 10 years also since it is fac­tored into the retire­ment pay? Thanks.

  2. My hus­band was med­ically retired after 4 or 5 years of ser­vice. Our divorce is slated to take place in a week. I wasn’t noti­fied so the judge post­poned it. It was post­poned again (no rea­son given). We sep­a­rated then rec­on­ciled after he claimed he attended anger man­age­ment and DV classes.Shortly there­after, I learned he was lying and ended the rec­on­cil­i­a­tion. I was diag­nosed as hav­ing PTSD and Anx­i­ety dis­or­der after the phys­i­cal abuse he put me through through­out the mar­riage. I had to file 3 restrain­ing orders against him, he vio­lated each one. My con­cern is that I will not be able to con­tinue my med­ical treat­ment with him med­ically retir­ing and don/t know how to address this dur­ing the court hear­ing. He hired an atty that does “no co test” divorces. He never noti­fied me so I’m sure he thought it would be uncon­tested. What do I do? What are my rights?

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