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What is the 10/10 rule in military divorces?

On Behalf of | Apr 27, 2022 | Divorce, Military Divorce

Few divorce cases are easy. The majority of cases involve several considerations as to how to split assets and marital property according to state laws and regulations. In military divorce cases, however, the proceedings must adhere to a set of additional laws and guidelines as well.

The United States provides a number of benefits to military service members during and after their service capacity. The spouses of these members also see benefits – even after a divorce in some cases.

The 10/10 rule

Entitled members of the military receive retirement pay after service. If married for more than a decade, military spouses are also entitled to a portion of this retirement pay. In military divorces, this is the 10/10 rule.

In order to qualify, divorcing couples must have the following:

  • One or both spouses must have served in the military for a minimum of ten years.
  • The marriage lasted for at least ten years.

The courts consider the amount of retirement pay to divide, the dates of marriage and military service, any additional support orders and the jurisdiction of the divorce.

Military ex-spouses

In civilian divorces, and in military divorces in which the marriage dissolved after less than ten years, things such as alimony, child support, and other asset payments are typically made between ex-spouses. In a military divorce that is subject to the 10/10 rule, however, the ex-spouse receives payment directly from the military itself.

This percentage of retirement pay awarded to the ex-spouse depends on several factors but reaches a limit of no more than 50% of the retired pay. In some instances, the payments may reach up to 65% to cover child support and alimony payments.