Divorce in Colorado for military personnel is the same as it is for civilians; however, servicemembers face some unique obstacles that we at Aviso, as former active duty officers and Judge Advocates, fully understand. Some of these obstacles and areas include:
- Jurisdictional Issues
- Military Retirement
- Thrift Savings Plans (TSP)
- Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH)
- VA Disability
- Life Insurance
- Hazard Duty Pay
- Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA)
Military Divorce Jurisdiction
To obtain a divorce in Colorado, you must be a resident of the state of Colorado. Normally, merely residing in the state will qualify you as a resident; however specific rules apply to military members generally due to the fact many servicemembers elect a state of residence different from the one they are stationed. For example a servicemember may be physically living in Colorado Springs but elects to pay taxes in Kansas.
- According to Colorado Law, if the servicemember is only in Colorado because of orders and has not otherwise taken steps to become a resident of Colorado (i.e. registered to vote, obtained a driver’s license, transferred insurance, opened a bank account, etc.), the courts do not have jurisdiction over the servicemember.
- However, only one spouse needs to be a resident of Colorado to file for a divorce. Therefore, if one spouse is a servicemember and the other is not but has a job in Colorado or pays taxes in Colorado. Colorado would have jurisdiction.
- Even if Colorado can exercise jurisdiction over a servicemember, the court may not have jurisdiction to divide a military retirement unless the servicemember initiates the divorce proceedings.
The military divorce attorneys at Aviso Law understand the obstacles military members face when going through a divorce and will provide military members the service and dedications their case deserves.