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My husband wants a divorce after 19 years of marriage he has…

Customer Question
My husband wants a...

My husband wants a divorce after 19 years of marriage he has served 24 and a half years military and now is retired. What is the best way to write in the divorce papers that I will receive part of his pension with cost of living increases yearly.

Lawyer's Assistant: Because laws vary from place to place, can you tell me what state this is in?

Wa

Lawyer's Assistant: Have you talked to anyone in the chain of command about this?

No he has been retired since January 1st 2011

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

I have two children also I do receive alimony and child support. And I would like child support to continue if my children go to college they are aged 13 and 17

Submitted: 4 months ago.Category: Military Law
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Answered in 12 minutes by:
12/14/2017
Military Lawyer: Lucy, Esq., Attorney replied 4 months ago
Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Attorney
Category: Military Law
Satisfied Customers: 31,929
Experience: Lawyer
Verified

Hi,

I'm Lucy, and I'd be happy to answer your questions today.

Typically, with a pension, what you'd be awarded is a set percentage of what your spouse is receiving. In this case, you'd be entitled to 50% of the amount accumulated during the past 19 years (roughly 40% of the total). Having it listed as a percentage of the total means that you'd get cost of living increases when he does. The judge is unfortunately not likely to give you cost of living increases if your spouse does not receive them, because then over time, you'd potentially be getting more money than him from his retirement. You can certainly put in a separation agreement that this is what you want, but the judge would have to agree.

Child support is based on set guidelines and is automatic for the custodial parent except in cases where the spouses share custody and have about equal income. You will get that whether you're receiving alimony or not. Under Washington law, support only continues beyond the age of majority when the divorce decree says so. If your husband will agree to it, that makes things easier on you - especially because you'll want to get that settled before the 17-year-old has a birthday or graduates from high school (whichever is later). However, even if he disagrees, you can ask the judge to put college expenses in the order.

This calculator will help you estimate how much child support you might be able to get.

https://fortress.wa.gov/dshs/dcs/SSGen/Home/QuickEstimator

Alimony is need-based. The judge will look at whether you are working, whether you've ever worked, whether you're able to work, what your income is, and what your expenses is. When calculating your income, the judge is going to consider the amount of income you're already getting from your share of the pension (which is an asset to be divided) and the extent to which child support is available to cover things like housing expenses. If you have your own retirement accounts, or other income generating assets (such as a rental property), that will also be considered. Judges have a lot of leeway in assigning alimony. The starting point for you is usually to list out your expenses and any income to see what you need to maintain your current standard of living.

If you have any questions or concerns about my response, please reply WITHOUT RATING. It's important that you are 100% satisfied with my courtesy and professionalism. Otherwise, please rate my service positively so I am paid for the time I spend answering questions. If you are on a mobile device, you may need to scroll to the right. There is no charge for follow-up questions. Thank you.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
I know that I and entitled up to 50% of his retirement. He is 80% disabled and collects a portion of his pension and disability through the military he has a full-time job on the civilian side. We are going to go through a mediation because we both cannot afford lawyers
Military Lawyer: Lucy, Esq., Attorney replied 4 months ago

Our comments posted at the same time, so I'm not sure if you saw what I wrote initially. If not, please scroll up.

You'll also get half of whatever money he has in civilian retirement accounts, even if he's still working. The judge can issue an order to put those accounts in your name. You're allowed a one-time distribution tax free (of all or part of it), or you can put in a retirement account in your own name to draw on when you reach retirement age.

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Military Lawyer: Lucy, Esq., Attorney replied 4 months ago

Do you have any questions about this?

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Lucy, Esq.
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