Military Divorce


Military Divorce in Tampa
Military families face unique issues when divorcing. The Uniformed Services Former Spouses’ Protection Act says that the state of legal residence of the military member always has the power to divide the military pension in a divorce. Additionally, the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act allows active-duty service members to request a “stay” (that is, to delay the proceedings) of a divorce or other claims (such as spousal support, custody, child support, property division and military division) if their duties prevent them from participating in or responding to the court action. The initial “stay” is for at least 90 days. The court can grant extensions after 90 days, but one can’t postpone the divorce forever. The purpose of the “stay” is to delay the court action as long as the military member’s duties interfere with his/her participation.

Florida Military Divorce Attorneys
Open Palm attorneys understand the unique issues involved in military divorces. We also appreciate your service. Open Palm offers special rates for veterans and military members.

Call 813-870-3839

FAQs for Military Divorce

Can my spouse obtain a divorce from me while I am overseas on military duty?

No. The Soldiers and Sailors Civil Relief Act allows for the protection of a service-member from being found in default of an action during his/her active duty, and up to 60 days after, so that the military spouse is not found in default while serving our nation.

Am I entitled to any of my military spouse’s retirement benefits?

The Uniformed Service Former Spouses Protection Act governs how military benefits, specifically retirement, are calculated and divided when a divorce is filed. Federal law will not permit any service member’s retirement benefits to be dispersed directly to a spouse unless they have been married for 10 years or more during the member’s active military duty.

I have have custody of my children, and I’ve been relocated pursuant to military orders. Will I need permission from the family court to relocate with my children?

If your ex is not in agreement, then yes, you will need to follow the procedure set forth in Florida Statute 61.13001 regarding relocation.

I have visitation with my children, but I’ve been deployed. Can I allow my family to care for my children during my visitation periods while I’m gone?

Yes. When a parent is deployed in excess of 90 days, the deployed parent may assign that parenting time to a stepparent, relative of the child by marriage, or another family member. If the deployed party wants to make such a designation, it must be done at least ten days prior to any change taking place. A parent may object to a designation only on the basis that it is not in the best interest of the child. Either party is entitled to an expedited court proceeding if the parties cannot agree on the designated party.



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“Joryn was simply amazing. Her supporting, consistent, honest, and most importantly – productive – approach was exactly what I needed to get through the process. A court trial was imminent if we did not have a successful mediation (the third one!), and no other attorney was able to focus the entire team like Joryn.”Danielle, January 2016



Open Palm in Tampa, Florida is proud to present our firm’s founder, Joryn Jenkins. Please take a moment to read about her qualifications to assist you. We also invite you to view her resume.

In the beginning, Ms. Jenkins worked for one of the ten largest law firms in the country in its Washington, D.C. office. After nearly three years practicing in all aspects of regulatory law, she took a break from big firm life to work exclusively for one of her own clients on a class action involving more than fifty sex discrimination claims in California. When she returned to the East Coast, she accepted an offer from the state attorney in Tampa, E.J. Salcines (now an appellate judge). CONTINUE READING…