Military Divorce Lawyer San Antonio

At The Levinson Law Firm, we understand the unique challenges faced by military families during the process of divorce. When you are in need of a military divorce lawyer in San Antonio, TX, our team of experienced divorce lawyers are here to help. Our firm is dedicated to providing top-tier legal support for service members and their families navigating the intricate process of divorce. With a deep understanding of both military and civilian divorce laws, our military divorce attorneys are committed to offering compassionate, personalized legal guidance tailored to meet the unique needs of San Antonio residents. Whether you’re facing challenges related to custody, benefits, or the division of assets, The Levinson Law Firm is here to ensure your rights are protected every step of the way.

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Unmatched Expertise in Texas’ Military Divorce Law

Military divorces carry distinct challenges that require a specialized approach. Levinson Law is uniquely positioned to handle these cases with exceptional care and precision. Our seasoned military divorce attorneys in San Antonio are well-versed in both federal and state laws governing military divorces, including the Uniformed Services Former Spouses’ Protection Act (USFSPA) and Servicemember Civil Relief Act (SCRA), which play a critical role in determining the division of military retirement, among other issues.

The Role of the Servicemember Civil Relief Act (SCRA)

The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) plays a crucial role in military divorces by providing specific legal protections designed to mitigate the challenges service members face due to their duties. Key provisions include the ability to request a stay of proceedings when military responsibilities prevent personal attendance in court, and protections against default judgments if a service member is unable to respond to a legal action due to their service. These measures ensure that military personnel can adequately represent their interests in a divorce, even when deployed or stationed overseas.

How a Military Divorce Lawyer from Levinson Law Can Help Residents of San Antonio

Military divorces involve considerations that are not typically present in civilian divorces. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Military Pensions and Retirement Benefits: Navigating the division of military retirement/pensions requires a lawyer who understands the complexities of the Uniformed Services Former Spouses’ Protection Act and how it interacts with Texas law.
  • Child Custody and Support: Military service can complicate child custody and support issues. We are skilled in creating arrangements that honor your service while protecting your parental rights.
  • Health Care and Housing Benefits: Understanding how divorce affects Tricare benefits and eligibility for military housing is crucial. Our expertise ensures you make informed decisions about your future.
  • Jurisdiction and Residency Requirements: Military families often live in multiple states or overseas, raising questions about where to file for divorce. Levinson Law guides you through determining the appropriate jurisdiction to protect your interests.

Our attorneys are proficient in addressing these and other concerns that arise in military divorce proceedings, ensuring that you receive knowledgeable guidance and support.

Military Divorce Benefits

Military divorces come with specific considerations regarding benefits, which can significantly impact the financial well-being of both parties. One of the most substantial benefits involved in a military divorce is the division of the military retirement. Under the Uniformed Services Former Spouses’ Protection Act (USFSPA), military retirement/pensions are treated as marital property and can be divided between the spouse and the service member. 

Health care benefits are also crucial; former spouses may qualify for continued healthcare coverage under certain conditions through TRICARE. Furthermore, the Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP) allows a divorced spouse to continue receiving a portion of the service member’s retirement benefits in the event of the service member’s death, provided the appropriate elections are made during the divorce proceedings.

Child Custody in Military Divorces

Child custody in military divorces requires accommodating the unique demands of military service, which can include frequent relocations and deployments. Courts generally aim to create custody arrangements that maintain stability for the children while also considering the service commitments of the military parent. Factors such as the potential for future deployments and the geographic stability of the civilian parent play critical roles in these decisions. 

Additionally, most states have enacted laws that prevent permanent custody modifications based solely on a service member’s deployment, ensuring that temporary duties do not unfairly affect the service member’s custodial rights. Courts may also incorporate provisions that allow for flexible visitation schedules, recognizing the unpredictability of military obligations, and often include virtual visitation rights to facilitate regular contact between the service member and their children during periods of deployment.

The Process of Filing for Military Divorce in San Antonio, TX

Navigating a military divorce in San Antonio, TX, involves a unique set of steps that differ from civilian divorces due to federal statutes and military codes that impact the process. Here’s a general overview of the steps involved in filing for a military divorce in San Antonio:

  1. Determine Jurisdiction: The first step is to decide where to file for divorce. For military families, this could be the state where the military member is stationed, where they claim legal residency, or where the non-military spouse resides.
  2. Understand Residency Requirements: Texas requires at least one spouse to have been a resident of the state for a minimum of six months and a resident of the county where the divorce is filed for at least 90 days before filing.
  3. Prepare and File the Divorce Petition: The spouse initiating the divorce (the petitioner) needs to prepare and file a petition for divorce with the local court. The petition should address key issues such as division of property, child custody, and spousal support.
  4. Serve the Divorce Papers: Once filed, the divorce papers must be legally served to the other spouse (the respondent). If the military member is on active duty, special rules apply under the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) to protect their rights, potentially delaying proceedings.
  5. Respond to the Divorce Petition: The served spouse has a specific timeframe to respond to the petition. However, the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) must be considered. Their response can agree with the petition, disagree with parts of it, or file a counter-petition.
  6. Temporary Orders: Either party can request temporary court orders for issues such as child support, custody, and spousal support during the divorce process.
  7. Discovery Phase: Both parties exchange information and documents related to their finances, property, and other relevant matters. This phase is crucial for preparing for negotiations or trial.
  8. Negotiation and Mediation: Before going to trial, parties must attempt to negotiate an agreement with the help of their attorneys. Mediation is required to resolve disputes.
  9. Trial: If an agreement cannot be reached through negotiation or mediation, the case will go to trial. A judge or jury will make decisions on all contested issues.
  10. Finalization of Divorce: Once all issues are resolved and the judge signs the final divorce decree, the divorce is official. The decree will detail all issues regarding custody, division of property, spousal support, and other relevant issues.

Summary of Civil Proceedings for Military Divorce

Military personnel going through a divorce may have unique legal protections under the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA), particularly regarding the timing and participation in civil proceedings. Here’s a brief summary of how these provisions can affect a military divorce:

Stay of Civil Proceedings

The SCRA allows for a stay, or postponement, of civil proceedings if a service member’s duties materially affect their ability to participate. The conditions for such a stay include:

  • Notification: The service member must be on active duty or within 90 days of discharge.
  • Written Application: The service member must submit a written request for the stay, detailing how their military duties impair their ability to appear in court and suggesting a feasible appearance date.
  • Commander’s Statement: The application must be accompanied by a statement from the service member’s commander confirming that military duties prevent appearance and that leave is not granted.

Initially, the court is required to grant a minimum 90-day stay upon application. Additional stays may be requested with the same documentation, although subsequent applications may be denied if the court appoints an attorney to represent the service member’s interests.

Protection from Default Judgments

Another significant protection under the SCRA concerns default judgments, which are judgments entered against a person who fails to respond to a legal action. Protections include:

Affidavit Requirement: Before a default judgment can be issued, the plaintiff must file an affidavit indicating whether the defendant is in military service.

Court-Appointed Attorney: If it’s unclear whether the defendant is in military service, the court must appoint an attorney to determine the defendant’s status and possibly request a stay on their behalf.

If a default judgment is issued while the service member is in military service or within 60 days of their release, the judgment can be reopened if:

  • Material Effect: The service member’s defense was materially affected by their military service.
  • Legal Defense: The service member has a valid defense to assert in the case.
  • Timely Application: The request to reopen the judgment is made during or within 90 days of the end of military service.

These SCRA provisions ensure that service members are not unfairly disadvantaged in legal proceedings due to their duties, providing essential protections during challenging times like a divorce.

Why Choose Levinson Law When You Need a Military Divorce Attorney in San Antonio?

The following are just a few reasons why residents of San Antonio, TX, trust the attorneys at Levinson Law firm for their divorce cases:

Experience and Expertise

Our attorneys bring a wealth of experience and a deep understanding of both military and Texas family laws to the table. This dual expertise is critical in addressing the unique challenges presented by military divorces.

Personalized Approach

We recognize that each military family’s situation is unique. Levinson Law prides itself on a personalized approach to legal representation, tailoring our strategies to meet the specific needs and goals of our clients.

Commitment to Service

Just as you have committed to serving our country, we are committed to serving you. Our team is dedicated to providing the support and guidance you need throughout the divorce process, ensuring your rights are protected every step of the way.

Resources and Support

Beyond legal representation, Levinson Law offers a network of resources to support you through the emotional and logistical challenges of a military divorce. From connecting you with counseling services to assisting with relocation issues, we are here to help.

Contact Levinson Law Today

If you’re facing the prospect of a military divorce in San Antonio, TX, don’t navigate this challenging journey alone. Contact Levinson Law Firm today to discuss your case with our experienced team. Learn more about how we can assist you by reaching out to Levinson Law, where your service and sacrifice are met with the legal expertise and support you deserve.


Military divorces involve specific federal laws, such as the USFSPA, which affect pension distribution, and have unique residency and filing requirements.
Yes, we can assist with military divorces even if one spouse is stationed overseas, provided that the residency requirements for filing in Texas are met. Jurisdiction is a key factor in military divorces, and we can help determine the best course of action based on your circumstances.
The SCRA provides protections for active duty military members, including the potential to postpone divorce proceedings. This ensures that military members have the opportunity to participate in the process without the added stress of affecting their duty.
Military retirement/pensions and benefits are subject to division as part of the marital estate, but the method and amount can vary based on factors such as the length of the marriage, the overlap of military service with the marriage, and state laws. Our experienced attorneys can navigate these complexities to advocate for a fair division.

Child custody in military divorces must consider the unique demands of military service, including potential relocations and deployments. Our firm works to establish custody and parenting plans that serve the best interests of the children while respecting the service obligations of the military parent.

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