Protecting What Matters Most

Can spouses keep their military benefits after divorce?

On Behalf of | Aug 9, 2022 | Military Divorce

The breakdown of a once-loving relationship can happen in any family, even those involved in the armed forces. As the spouse of a service member, you probably have concerns about how a divorce will impact your family’s benefits.

You may be relieved to learn that your children have a right to military healthcare coverage until they turn 21 through TRICARE. But, how will divorce affect your benefits as a former military spouse?

Loss of benefits will occur

Until your military divorce is complete, you retain your spousal benefits. You may use your identification card and live in installation housing until the divorce concludes. At that point, the divorce will impact you in the following ways.

You will be expected to vacate housing in your military installation within 30 days after your spouse moves out. The military may pay your moving expenses if you live on an overseas base.

You will also lose your TRICARE health benefits after the divorce. However, you have the option to purchase an additional 36 months of healthcare coverage.

Temporary financial support

Under military policies, service members must support their families even before they obtain a divorce settlement or court order. However, these policies provide only temporary child and spousal support. You must petition for additional benefits when you file for divorce.

Many believe military courts handle service member divorces, but that is a misconception. Most military divorces take place in civil courts. Filing in a civil court allows you to address the financial gaps left after losing your military benefits, such as spousal and child support.

Learn more about divorcing a military spouse in New York or the state of your residence to ensure you remain financially secure after your divorce.

FindLaw Network