RI military service members or their spouse seeking a divorce in the Rhode Island Family Court must be aware that such actions means complying with the substantive and procedural laws of the state.

Both spouses need to be aware of the military benefits which are lost or retained upon divorce. Please note this applies to all branches of the military, both active and reserve:

  • Rhode Island National Guard
  • Army
  • Navy
  • Air Force
  • Marines
  • Coast Guard

A Rhode Island Family Court Final Judgement of Divorce will affect the privileges, legal rights and entitlements of the nonmilitary former spouse in numerous ways. Separation can mean that the nonmilitary former spouse loses their right to reside in on-base housing. Spousal military benefits are also lost, except in certain cases of long time marriages, which are concurrent with career military service.

Such benefits lost may include military ID card, commissary and base exchange privileges, TRICARE coverage, and medical care at military treatment facilities. Be aware that these federal benefits are often beyond the powers of the Rhode Island Family Court, and terminate when one’s status as a military spouse ends.

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