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#772590 - 09/29/16 12:50 AM married 22 yrs to a ret AF w/special needs child
jmorgan Offline

recently joined

Registered: 09/29/16
Posts: 1
so...first time I've ever posted on anything like this, just wanted to see what options I have, please bear with me. I've been married almost 23 years to a man who served 25 years, and we were married 12 of those years. We have 2 children together (one who has special needs). I worked part of the time during our marriage, but have not worked the past 10+ years due to caring for our special needs child. Husband had committed adultery multiple times during our marriage (since the very early times even). Which in retrospect I should have left then, but am glad I didn't or I wouldn't have my 2 children whom I love dearly. So, he's a cheater...blah blah blah. I knew it, he knew I knew, we even talked about it. BUT I knew our children (ESPECIALLY our special needs child would be devastated it we divorced), so I just moved on so to speak. I have recently found out that husband has been using prostitutes over the past 2 years (could be longer, but can only prove 2 years). At this point, my own sanity is at stake. Being in the same room as him is challenging for lack of a better word. I have been able to "fake it" in front of our kids for 18 years, but can no longer do that as I am absolutely disgusted by this man. I do have a strong support system from my parents and family, and they know everything. I want to leave but am concerned what my rights are financially. As I stated I have not worked and can NOT work because of the care required for our child. I am concerned obviously that I might not be able to provide financially for our children (one is also in college). What can I expect? He receives retirement pay and VA disability pay. He also has a SBP for me, and for our special needs child. Should I just stick it out? Any advice would be welcome. Please be respectful, as this has been very hard to deal with obviously. I KNOW I should have left sooner, but financially have felt trapped and unable to do so. I don't want my kids to suffer. Anyone with some helpful info?

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#772591 - 09/29/16 09:23 PM Re: married 22 yrs to a ret AF w/special needs child [Re: jmorgan]
TJMH Offline

enthusiast

Registered: 07/17/15
Posts: 338
A lot depends on what state you live in. Specifically whether it's a "community property" or "equitable distribution" state for division of property and whether it allows for a fault-based divorce for adultery or is strictly no-fault.

Even if your state allows fault based grounds it will probably be easier, cheaper and less painful to go no-fault based on "irreconcilable differences" or words to that effect.

You're entitled to (more or less) half of the marital estate, including house, cars, retirement accounts etc.. You're likely also entitled to child support which will mainly be based on who has custody and the difference in your incomes.

You're entitled to half of the portion of his retirement that was earned during the marriage, so basically 6/25ths. This is usually calculated on his "disposable retired pay" after some specified deductions, most notably SBP premiums.

His VA disability also enters into this in a couple of ways. Disability pay is his income, not an asset to be divided. So you're not entitled to a share but it does enter into child support and spousal support calculations.

The other aspect is that unless he's rated at 50%or more his retired pay (and thereby your share) is reduced by the amount of disability pay. You should be able to negotiate a higher share of retired pay to compensate for this.

In your situation you should be able to apply to have DFAS pay you your share of retired pay directly, but you need the appropriate order from the court. It's best to get a separate attorney who specializes in military domestic relations orders to write that up for you.

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