Q. How do I go about getting support for my children from my spouse that is active duty? We are not divorced!
So I’ve been a military spouse going on 5 years now yet we have been separated for almost a year. He recently received orders to San Antonio but I stayed in Virginia to be with my family. We have two children together and I’ve been a stay at home mom for a few years now. He doesn’t give me any kind of support financially and he really has no contact with me nor the children ( his choice).
It’s really starting to become a struggle and incredibly frustrating. I really don’t believe in being one of those ex-spouses that runs to the command every time there is a problem but I’m at my breaking point. So my question is what do i do? I’m doing the best that I can as a ” single” parent but something has seriously got to give. I really don’t want to mess with his career or see him in any sort of trouble I just want some support for my children but I’m completely lost at what to do.
I commend you for taking the high road and choosing not to be a spouse (or ex-spouse) that goes to his command and meddling in his career.
Just remember support in the Military’s eyes doesn’t only include cash. If he pays for your car, insurance, rent, etc… that is also seen as support, which means he is supporting you and your children. So if he pays for anything that has your name on it or the children’s, then the Military sees that as support.
However, now that you are separated, why are you yourself not working? It is also your duty to support your children not just his. It’s clear that you feel that you cannot depend on him to support his children, so you will need to take the bull by the horns to make sure that you and your children do not go without.
As for his support, other than notifying his command there is not much you can do since you are still married. I would suggest contacting a lawyer and get the ball rolling on that divorce! The quicker it is over with, the quicker there will be an order from a court stating that he must pay child support. Once you have a child support order, the Military will set up an involuntary allotment (which means he cannot stop it without a court order) that comes out of his pay every month and goes to you.
If you can’t afford a lawyer look into your county law about filing for divorce yourself. Usually, for uncontested divorces (which I am assuming this is the case) the county will have fill in the blank forms. Additionally, most lawyers won’t charge much for an uncontested divorce. It’s the divorces where the parties do not agree on property and/or child custody that are the ones that cost a small fortune. I don’t know the rules in your state as I am not a lawyer. Your best bet is to contact one (most will speak to you without a fee) and get that ball rolling on your divorce. If it’s uncontested, it shouldn’t take but a couple of months to be finalized and you can start getting child support. Again, I am not a lawyer, so your best bet is to contact one for a consultation to find out the divorce law in your state and what you will need to do in order to obtain a divorce.
Best of luck to you!