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P. Simmons
P. Simmons, Military Lawyer
Category: Military Law
Satisfied Customers: 26124
Experience:  Retired Marine Corps lawyer and Veterans Services Officer (VSO) with 12+ yrs. of experience.
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Can I still get my right for the retirement money from the

Resolved Question:

Can I still get my right for the retirement money from the court order during the divorce proceedings way back in 1982. We were married for over 13 years. He joined in 1966, we got married in 1968, divorced in 1982. I sent all the document to DFAS in June of 2012, I never get any respond from them.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Military Law
Expert:  PhilCave replied 1 year ago.
Hello, thanks for asking your question.
Unless your divorce decree gave a portion of the retirement, no you cannot get any of the retirement.
In fact, it was not until several years after 1982 that the law changed to allow division of military retirement in divorce.
It's possible DFAS did not respond because they knew you were not entitled to money. However, it would have been more polite of them to tell you so.
Sorry, but at this time it is much too late.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I don't think I understand your answer.. There was a court order from the divorce paper stating I am to receive 331/3% of my ex-husband military pay. we were married for over 13 years during his military service. Do you mean that the court order is invalid? He retired in in 1987. Joined the navy in 1966, we git married in 1968, divorced in 1982? Please clarify your answer.
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 1 year ago.
Thanks for the chance to help. I am an attorney with over 12 years military law experience.

Ma'am, can you tell me, since the order was issued by the court (some 30 years ago) has he paid at all?

If not, have you taken him to court to enforce this?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
There was a payment I received back in 1990 for 4 months of $230per month with a small child support. He cancelled all payments when our third child turned 18 but the youngest was only 14 years old. I have not taken any actions against him yet. I do not know how to proceed.
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 1 year ago.
Thank you Ma'am

A few more questions please

You mention sending documents to DFAS...can you tell me did you send

1. A certified copy (signed by the court) of the decree of divorce

2. Did you send DD Form 2293 (you can see a copy here http://www.dtic.mil/whs/directives/infomgt/forms/eforms/dd2293.pdf)?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Yes, I sent !1. certified copy signed by the court of the divorce decree and 2. DD Form 2293 back in June 2012. They never responded.
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 1 year ago.
Thank you

Then something is amiss. That form 2293, is the key to this.

Have you followed up with DFAS yet? To find out the status of your request? If so what was the response?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Not yet, because they told in the first letter that it will take up to 90 days, but it is almost a year now. I just gotten so very busy with work. I am planning to give them a call, hopefully they will answer, because sometimes someone will answer and put me on hold for long time and no one comes back.
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 1 year ago.
Thank you Ma'am

That would be the first step

The law supports you on this...that is good. If your marriage was 10 years or longer during his service, he retired, and you have a court order dividing the retirement? Then this is easy...or should be

Typically these take a few weeks to process.

It sounds like yours got lost!

I am sorry for that.

The first step is to contract DFAS. Let them know what happened...it may be they can find the request and process immediately. It may be you have to fax it to them again. Regardless, I would expect DFAS to solve this for you

Next? If they do not? Contact your congressman...they can engage on your behalf.

If you had to, you could sue and force DFAS to follow the law...but I doubt that this is required.

Now...the other thing to consider is that your ex is in contempt of the court order...so you can bring him to court and ask the court to award a judgment for all that money he did not pay you over the years. That is separate and apart from DFAS and would require you have a lawyer assist you.

But for DFAS? If you contact them, I bet they can fix this for you

P. Simmons, Military Lawyer
Category: Military Law
Satisfied Customers: 26124
Experience: Retired Marine Corps lawyer and Veterans Services Officer (VSO) with 12+ yrs. of experience.
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