Divorce is never a straightforward process. However, a military divorce while overseas can be a particularly difficult process. If you need a divorce while you are overseas, you might have many questions. Read on to find out everything that you should know about the process.

How does military divorce while overseas work?

There are a few common questions that people have about overseas military divorces. First and foremost, they ask if the local laws apply. You might worry about needing to adhere to local divorce laws. In some countries, this could be a major disadvantage for you or your partner.

Fortunately, a military divorce while overseas ignores the local divorce laws. Instead, it relies on US divorce laws. While you might be living in a foreign country, you still follow US divorce law. If you want a valid divorce, you need one that your home state recognizes. If you get a divorce that adheres to local standards, it won’t apply back in the US. You could have a divorce in one country and a legal marriage in the US.

However, your legal home could be in a foreign country. In this rare case, you would need to adhere to the local divorce laws. These laws vary from country to country. In some situations, you may have several legal homes. If you do, then you can choose where you file for a divorce.

How can you get a divorce?

Another common question relates to the process of getting a military divorce overseas. It is not enough to go to the legal assistance office for a divorce. Instead, you need to go to court. In most situations, you need a private attorney. The only exception is during uncontested divorces. If you and your partner can agree on everything, then you might not need a private attorney.

It’s worth noting that the legal assistance office can still help you. If you go to them, then they may be able to advise you on the divorce procedures. Additionally, they may be able to prepare and witness the signing of a separation agreement. If you want an uncontested divorce, the office can explain the process for that.

For a contested divorce, you need the help of a lawyer. He can help you through the filing process. In some situations, you may need to hire a lawyer from your home state. If you have several “homes,” you need to choose one from the place where your legal home resides. You need to be able to qualify for in-state college tuition at the residence. While you may consider your military home your home, you need to make sure it meets the legal definition of your legal home.

Can you get a cheap or quick divorce?

Some overseas couples decide that it might be easier to get a divorce in a place like Mexico or the Dominican Republic. Although divorce in these places is cheaper than the US alternative, it doesn’t mean anything. It’s likely that your home state will not recognize the divorce.

Making the Decision

Unlike civilians, military personnel often have the flexibility to choose where they file for divorce. If you have multiple homes that qualify as your legal home, then you have the luxury of choosing. Every state in the US has different divorce laws. Likewise, every country has unique laws. Before you file, you need to decide which is the best option for filing. And you need to be certain that you file in the state or country that applies to your marriage.

If you have a hard time finding out where your legal home or homes may be, there are a few tricks. First, look at where you are registered to vote. Then, you should consider where you pay your state taxes. Make a list of the states in which you have baking accounts, drivers licenses, and car titles. If you pay real estate taxes on property in certain states, that can also count towards your legal home.

Once you know where you can file for divorce, you need to consider the perks of each state. In some states, there are no-fault divorces. When you file for your divorce, you don’t need to prove that the other party was at fault in any way. Depending on the circumstances of your divorce, this could be a good thing.

Getting the Help You Need

Filing for military divorce while overseas is complicated. If you make one wrong move, you could get a divorce statement that means nothing. It’s important that you get your divorce right the first time. Additionally, it’s important that you complete the process in the easiest possible way.

If you’re a service member, the legal aid office can be very useful. They can advise you on the procedure. However, you may need more extensive help. If you have concerns about your divorce, you should contact a lawyer. With his help, you may be able to get the ideal outcome from your divorce.

By: Tina Lewert

Attorney Tina L. Lewert is an experienced Florida Board Certified Marital and Family Law Specialist who works with clients to resolve family law issues including child custody, visitation, and parenting issues, and child support, alimony, and marital agreements. Ms. Lewert earned her undergraduate degree at Florida Atlantic University and her J.D. from the Nova Southeastern University Shepard Broad Law Center in Fort Lauderdale.