At first thought, someone might think that divorce is divorce and that something like military status wouldn’t affect the process. However, in California, a military divorce has many unique aspects to it that differentiate it from a divorce among civilians. Understanding these differences can protect both parties and help your process of divorce be a smoother one.
In California, the military has enacted laws of protection for those in active service. What this means is that military personnel is protected from his or her spouse filing for and achieving a divorce while the other party is still in active service and unable to respond to the request for the marriage to end.
There is more time for the military person to respond to the divorce request and be present during the actual proceedings. This also prevents the military personnel from being held in default from not responding to the divorce request and having their spouse achieve a divorce without them knowing about it.
The Soldiers and Sailors Civil Relief Act, 50 UCS section 521 allows the military personnel to complete his or her time of active service and even 60 days after completion before responding to the divorce proceedings.
If the military spouse does not want to utilize the relief act, then he or she can sign a waiver that acknowledges that they wish to proceed with the divorce even while they are still in active duty. Then the divorce can proceed, uncontested and the process can be a part of a normal divorce proceeding.
The military spouse must receive a summons personally and be provided with a copy of the divorce papers so that the courts in California will be able to preside over the process.
Divorce between someone in the military and a civilian does have more differentiation than normal civilian divorce. In order to understand the differences, contact Ann Thomson (Seal Beach family law attorney) at 562-431-4333 in order to have the best outcome possible.