Division of Military Benefits in Orange County
Advocating for Your Property Rights in Divorce Cases
Military service is an honorable pursuit for which we, as Americans, are
all grateful. Unfortunately, the personal sacrifices that military servicemembers
make can disrupt their family relationships, sometimes resulting in divorce.
Ordinarily, matters concerning the division of property upon divorce and
the provision of domestic support are strictly within the province of
state law. However, the distribution of marital assets and liabilities
in military divorces must consider the application of relevant federal rules.
To ensure your property rights and interests are adequately considered
in a military divorce, you should seek the legal counsel of a dedicated
Orange County division of military benefits lawyer at Moshtael Family
Law. Backed by over thirteen decades of collective legal experience, our
legal team is poised to provide you and your family with comprehensive
legal representation when it comes to dividing property in a military divorce.
At Moshtael Family Law, we can advise you on the following issues:
- Rights to nondisability retired pay
- Rights to disability retired pay
- Benefits under the military Survivor Benefit Plan
- Division by sale
- Division in-kind
- Direct payment of court-ordered benefits
If you have questions about our services, please contact Moshtael Family
Law at to schedule a case evaluation.
Military Retired Pay
California has a significant military community, with bases located throughout
the state. For divorces filed in California, property division issues
are governed by principles of community property. Under California law,
all property that a couple acquires during marriage is considered to be
community property subject to equal division upon divorce. This includes
real estate, vehicles, financial investments, earnings from work, and
Furthermore, state courts have the authority to order a party to pay
spousal support and child support to their former spouse and children after divorce—known
family support orders. Under California law, courts may assign retirement benefits to satisfy
orders regarding the
division of community property and the provision of domestic support.
Members of the U.S. Armed Forces are generally entitled to receive
military retired pay in the form of monthly pension benefits. Federal law authorizes state
courts to order retired pay to satisfy a servicemember’s
child support obligations and settlement of community property upon divorce.
Military Survivor Benefit Plan
Military retirees can choose to participate in the Armed Forces’
Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP), which provides benefits to a designated beneficiary in the event that
the retiree passes away. The U.S. government funds its military SBP by
withholding amounts from a servicemember’s monthly retirement benefits.
Under federal law, a state court can order military servicemembers to join
the SBP and designate their former spouse as a beneficiary, pursuant to
a divorce settlement.
Military Disability Benefits
According to federal regulations, payments that a retired military servicemember
receives as compensation for disabilities they developed in connection
with military service are not subject to characterization as community
property. There are limited exceptions to this rule that may allow state
courts to reach a servicemember’s disability benefits. Our legal
team can evaluate whether an exception applies to your case.
For Quality Legal Advice, Reach Out to Moshtael Family Law
If you are in the midst of a divorce with a member of the U.S. military,
you should seek the professional legal services of an experienced attorney
at Moshtael Family Law. Our legal team has dedicated decades of their
legal practice to helping people navigate the complexities of California
family law, including issues related to military divorce.
Call us at or complete our
online consultation request form to schedule a case evaluation with one of our experienced attorneys. We're
proud to offer military discounts.