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Understanding the high rate of divorce for Air Force members

Some situations bring challenges to a marriage. These same challenges can often be the reason for divorce. For those in the armed forces, avoiding marital problems can be difficult, especially if a spouse is in deployment. This can be extremely difficult for a spouse and even children. For some, the distance could be the breaking point, but going through a divorce while a spouse is overseas could mean a very long and complex dissolution.

A recent report explored the military divorce rate for men and women in the Air Force. For men, those within security forces experience the largest number of divorces in the military branch. In comparison, woman in aerospace medicine and knowledge operations go through more divorces. According to the recent report, enlisted women are more likely to divorce than their male counterparts in the Air Force.

Researchers discovered that lower ranked woman were more likely to get divorced. This is often caused by the higher rate of marriage by females in these rankings. Some speculate that young woman are more likely to marry for the financial and marital benefits the military can offer. Getting married to take advantage of these incentives does not only mean an increased rate of young marriages but also an increase in divorce rates.

Due to these results, the military is seeking to de-incentivize marriage for young military men and woman. Marriage in the military should not be synonymous with military benefits. This could greatly reduce the divorce rate among military members. Furthermore, full disclosure of property and finances could help them avoid dissolution, or if a divorce has been initiated, getting a full financial picture could help them through the complex process.

During a military divorce, military benefits and marital assets should be understood. Receiving an equitable divorce settlement could take some time. This is especially true if both spouses are not currently residing in the same state or even country. In addition to consider asset and property division, financial support could be sought. A spouse could seek alimony, or if the couple has children, child support could be necessary.

The complexities of a military divorce are very real and present for those in the armed forces. It is crucial that both spouses understand the steps required in the process. This will ensure their rights and interests are properly served and protected.

Source: Military Times, "Divorce rates: Another view of the data," June 3, 2014

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