Today’s laws regarding family rights for parents that have served in the military seem to be considered an up-hill climb by many. If you are in this situation, it may appear impossible to get a fair divorce. Fathers’ rights’ are even more difficult to articulate in court for those that don’t place their focus in this area. These issues become more confusing when a veteran disability factor is involved regarding post-combat deployment.
I’ll never say that the law is unfair; however, it can appear unfair when active military and veterans enter the courtroom filled will emotion and a lack of supporting facts. The court may agree with their feelings but they often decide the warfighter’s fate based upon their articulation of the facts and circumstances relevant to their case. Appearing in court can be incredibly difficult for a warfighter, as it’s a battle they likely have never prepared for, and cannot understand or anticipate the proper tactics necessary to advance towards a fair, positive outcome.
As a family law attorney, I am very familiar with Nevada’s laws that judges consider to determine the outcome of divorce, child custody, or visitation cases. More and more, I am experiencing cases where a warfighter’s rights come into play when their former spouse claims the father is unfit to be a parent due to the father’s exposure to combat and time away from the family while serving our country. Federal laws for military divorce, such as the Uniformed Services Former Spouses’ Protection Act (USFSPA), as well as the Soldiers and Sailors Civil Relief Act, 50 UCS section 521, are also used and considered by judges in Nevada when deciding these cases. Warfighters’ veteran disability retirements are protected in most cases and so are their rights as a father.
This is my battle field. If you or your family are in the Northern Nevada area and are in need of Military Divorce, child custody, or other family law help, Contact me for a consult to discuss your case and formulate a plan of action.
~Sarah Hardy-Cooper, Esq.