Our Florida Supreme Court Certified Mediators at Mediation of Coral Springs, Inc. have experience in dealing with a spouse who is actively serving or who has retired from the U.S. military service and who are concerned about their rights during a Florida divorce.  There is a certain uniqueness in Florida divorces and paternity actions where one of the parties either served or is on active duty in the U.S. armed services.

The Uniformed Services Former Spouses’ Protection Act (USFSPA) 10 U.S.C. § 1408 contains several different components:  it allows a Florida (and other U.S. states) family law courts to distribute military retirement pay to a former spouse and it also provides for a mechanism to enforce orders issued by family law judges for ongoing child support, arrears and alimony.  These orders are enforced through the Department of Defense. Our Florida Supreme Court Certified Mediators at Mediation of Coral Springs, Inc. recognize that USFSPA does not allow for more than sixty-five (65) percent of a retired military member’s retirement pay can be garnished for spousal and child support.

Our Florida Supreme Court Certified Mediators at Mediation of Coral Springs, Inc. have experience with USFSPA and understands the importance of identifying which benefits are available to a former spouse of a member of the armed services.  We understand that if a former spouse to be meets certain requirements, he or she may be able to receive full or partial medical, dental, commissary and post-exchange benefits so that is why it is important to seek the advice of a Florida family attorney.

Our Florida Supreme Court Certified Mediators at Mediation of Coral Springs, Inc. realize that the Final Judgment of Dissolution of Marriage must specifically state that the award shall be made as direct payment of the retired military member’s retirement pay.

It is important to understand that the USFSPA does not automatically entitle a former spouse to his or her share of the service member’s retirement pay.  In order to be entitled to a share of your spouse military pension, a Mediated Settlement Agreement and a Florida family law court must award the spouse a portion of a member’s military retirement pay in the parties’ Final Judgment of Dissolution of Marriage.  

While Florida Statute § 61.076 (1) governs the distribution of retirement plans upon the dissolution of marriage and provides that “All vested and non-vested benefits, rights, and funds accrued during the marriage in retirement, pension, profit-sharing, annuity, deferred compensation, and insurance plans and programs are marital assets subject to equitable distribution” – this statute has no application to a division of a U.S. military retirement plan which is in reality governed by the so-called 10/10 rule.

The first “10” of the 10/10 Rule requires that you must have been married to your military spouse for at least ten years; whereas the second “10” requires that the military spouse must have served at least 10 years of service creditable towards retirement during the marriage.

            Our Florida Supreme Court Certified Mediators at Mediation of Coral Springs, Inc. look forward to mediating your divorce while keeping in mind the rights of members of the U.S. military and his or her spouse.

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