Military Divorce in New York

Divorce is something that no couple imagines at the time they are first married. However, they happen, and if you are either a member of the U.S. military, or the spouse of one, there is a lot you need to know about the legal process going forward. Please read on and reach out to our firm to learn more about what you can expect, as well as how our firm can help. Here are some of the questions you may have:

What are the residency requirements for military divorces?

To begin the divorce process, you and your spouse must first satisfy the residency requirements. However, since military members are often on-the-go, residency requirements are adjusted accordingly. A military member, or the spouse of a military member may only file for divorce:

  • In the state where the military member is stationed
  • In the state where the couple has legal residence
  • In the state where the military member claims legal residence

How do I serve a military member divorce papers?

To serve divorce papers to a member of the U.S. military, you will have to go to the base and speak with the designated official who acts as a law enforcement officer. However, even if you serve the divorce papers, if your spouse is currently away on duty, he or she may not accept the serve, thereby requesting a “stay” on the divorce. This will prolong the divorce until he or she returns from duty.

What does “default judgment” mean?

Civilian divorces require a spouse to respond when the other spouse files a Complaint for Divorce. When a spouse does not respond or act on the complaint, courts will very often issue a default judgment, which is essentially a binding verdict in favor of the spouse who filed the Complaint. However, since military duty very often prevents spouses from immediately responding to these Complaints, members of the U.S. military are generally protected from default judgments. Therefore, divorces may not be decided without the military member’s physical presence, or without legal counsel representing the military member while he or she is away.

Contact our experienced New York firm

Divorce is complex. Fortunately, our firm is here to address any questions and concerns you may have regarding your rights, assets, and future. When you choose our firm to represent your best interests, we address each of your concerns and answer all of your questions to help you rest assured knowing you have a compassionate, skilled firm fighting in your corner. We leave no stone unturned. No matter your legal situation, if you need us, we are here. We pride ourselves on providing sympathetic service and aggressive representation to clients all over Suffolk County. Do not hesitate to contact the Law Offices of Susan A. Kassel, P.C. for a consultation.