I have been married to my husband for over 10 years. He was active duty from Aug 2001 through March 2006 before his 20-year retirement. He has separated from me and we live in Maryland. He is telling me that in accordance with the USFPA, DFAS will not honor a court order to pay me directly of my 13% share of his military retirement? In otherwords, even if it's stated in the settlement agreement that retired pay is to be garnished and directly paid from DFAS, DFAS will ignore this requirement? Thank you.
State/Country relating to question: Maryland
Read an article in Military.com.
Thanks for the chance to help. I am an attorney with over 12 years military law experience.That may or may not be true...it depends on timing. Can you tell me, how long ago was the divorce?
We are not divorced yet. We are working on a settlement agreement. We have both retained attorneys, but neither has served for the JAG. I was told by Tricare that the supplement policy (can't remeber the name of it right now) covers former spouses for three years, but can continue indefinitely if I can show that I am receiving alimony from my husband's retired military pension. I am considered uninsurable for health insurance purposes because I have Multiple Sclerosis, so I need to have this insurance continue until I get to Medicare. I am only 54 years old and had to retire from the Federal Government on disability retirement after 17 years of service last November 2011. My husband left me July 2011.
Thank youI want to make sure I am clear....the portion of your marriage that overlapped his active service was from 2001 to 2006?
Thank youAnd I am sorry to have to bear bad news.Under 10 US Code 1408, since the marriage and military service do not overlap by at least 10 years, DFAS is not permitted to provide direct payment of his pension to you. This is no waiver for this provision. Unless or until Congress changes the law, DFAS will require a 10 year overlap of marriage and service for direct payment. The fact your court orders payment will not matter, since a state court has no authority to order DFAS (which is part of the federal government) to do anything.That said, if the court orders 13%, he must pay 13%...if he does not, you can take him back to court on contempt charges, and ask the court to require him to pay your lawyers fees (the cost to file the contempt charges)Let me know if you have more questions...happy help if I can.
Thank you. Follow-up question. What can the court order or settlement agreement state in writing that will satisfy the requirements of DEERS for continued health insurance?
The program you are discussing is called Continued Health Care Benefit Program (CHCBP). It comes from 10 US Code 1086.You can read about it herehttp://tricare.mil/mybenefit/ProfileFilter.do;jsessionid=PDKT5zZpWy3ZJpdyllVLTNhrqYsvnQT7gMTQZNxTpn7cTK4mvyxg!-294135028?puri=%2Fhome%2Foverview%2FSpecialPrograms%2FCHCBPNow...what you see is that Coverage is usually limited to 36 months however some unremarried former spouses may continue coverage beyond 36 months if they meet certain criteria. Contact Humana Military for details.I am not aware of the specific language required to obtain the extension, but I would urge you to contact Humana military for details
Thank you for your help in this matter.
Welcome. Please let me know if you have more questions, if not please accept / rate the question so I get credit for my work.
Retired Marine Corps Lawyer, Veterans Services Officer (VSO)
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