Military divorce need not be entirely different from civil divorce, but it could benefit you to look into some of the unique protections that your status as an active servicemember could afford you. This research could reveal that you have more time, options and bargaining power than you initially expected, specifically under the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act.

As per Military OneSource, the SCRA would probably be one of the most important military legal resources during your divorce. It could give you the right to avoid certain default judgments — court decisions that would probably not be in your favor — as well as grant you extra time for you to balance your duty to your country with your responsibility to respond to the divorce lawsuit.

You would probably already have some knowledge of these benefits after seeking on-base assistance at your Judge Advocate General’s office. However, keep in mind that the legal assistance attorneys do not represent clients in court. The next step would be determining how these unique protections could further your goals in the context of your unique case. Based on this knowledge, you would operate as necessary to secure your best possible outcome.

It may turn out that you would not need to take advantage of any of the extra-time benefits of the SCRA during your divorce. However, issues involving base housing, child support and pension division would probably arise. This would be especially likely if your spouse was also a servicemember.

Military divorce is often different from civilian divorce, at least in some respects. You would probably want to develop a working knowledge of all of these armed-service-specific peculiarities or to partner with someone who is already accustomed to them.