How Army Regulation 608-99 Can Affect Your Divorce

How Army Regulation 608-99 Can Affect Your DivorceIf you are in the Army and going through a divorce, you may be subject to different rules and regulations. One of those regulations is Army Regulation 608-99, which deals with financial support for your family.

AR 608-99 helps address questions and concerns regarding military service members and their obligation to provide some type of financial support to their spouse, families, or children when separated or deployed. This regulation is usually enforced when there is no written court order or agreement in place. If a written order or agreement is already in place, the soldier will not need to worry about following the rules of AR 608-99 because the court order or agreement will overrule this regulation and ensure that they are already providing some type of financial support to their children or spouse.

AR 608-99 is usually only temporary until the parties involved can develop some type of agreement regarding financial support. Therefore, this regulation is usually only used to make sure that the financial needs of the family or children are met during the timeframe that the parties are waiting to come to some type of legal agreement. This means that it is recommended for the service member and their spouse to seek legal advice and guidance to ensure that they have a more permanent or long-term solution for this matter.

Which servicemembers are subject to AR 608-99?

Per the U.S. Army:

This regulation applies to the Regular Army, the Army National Guard/Army National Guard of the United States, and the U.S. Army Reserve, unless otherwise stated. Specifically, it applies to the Regular Army, including cadets at the U.S. Military Academy; (2) The U.S. Army Reserve on active duty pursuant to orders for 30 days or more; (3) All members of the Army National Guard of the United States on active duty for 30 days or more; (4) Members of the Army National Guard on active duty for 30 days or more pursuant to orders under Title 32, United States Code, except for the punitive provisions of this regulation; and (5) Soldiers receiving full or partial pay and allowances while confined at the U.S. Disciplinary Barracks or other confinement facilities. This regulation applies during mobilization.

Who can receive financial support under AR 608-99?

According to the U.S. Army, family members can receive financial support under AR 608-99. This includes:

  • Spouses
  • Minor and legal children
  • Adults for whom the soldier is a legal guardian

Not all children are covered by AR 608-99.  There must be proof that the soldier is the legal parent in order to get the support under this regulation. The only exception for this is if the child is presumed to be the service member’s because they were married to the parent at the time of birth.

What type of support is covered by AR 608-99?

AR 608-99 provides support “in amounts equal to one of the following based on the Soldier’s pay grade:

  1. Basic allowance for housing (BAH): A military housing allowance based on the geographic duty location, pay grade, and dependency status.
  2. BAH Reserve Component/Transit (RC/T): The BAH allowance without consideration of the geographic duty location-the equivalent of the former basic allowance for quarters (often referred to as non-locality BAH).
  3. BAH–WITH: The BAH rate for a Soldier with dependents.
  4. BAH–WITHOUT: The BAH rate for a Soldier without dependents.
  5. BAH RC/T–WITH: The BAH RC/T rate for a Soldier with dependents.
  6. BAH RC/T–WITHOUT: The BAH RC/T rate for a Soldier without dependents.
  7. BAH–DIFF: The difference between the BAH RC/T–WITH and the BAH RC/T–WITHOUT for a Soldier’s pay grade”

Soldiers who do not receive BAH are not exempt from providing support to their families.

What are in-kind payments and are they accepted under AR 608-99?

In-kind payments are types of financial support that can be given to meet the requirements under AR 608-99. However, these payments typically are not provided directly to the spouse, child, or family member. Instead, they can be in the form of:

  • Rent payments
  • Mortgage payments
  • Electric bill payments
  • Gas bill payments
  • Property tax payments
  • Water bill payments

The military command usually approves whether or not these in-kind payments can be accepted to fulfill the requirements of the regulation.

Spousal support may be waived

If a military spouse earns a higher salary than the soldier, spousal maintenance may be waived. It may also be waived if:

  • The solider has already paid the spousal maintenance for 18 months
  • The soldier was a victim of abuse by the ex-spouse
  • The ex-spouse is incarcerated

Relief from spousal support does not mean relief from child support.

What to do if you are not receiving required financial support from a military service member

If a military member fails to provide support to his or her family, the family member has the option to reach out to the soldier’s commander for help. Once you contact the commander, you will be given options and solutions to obtain the financial assistance that you need.

The commander will likely order the soldier to give you financial support right away. If they fail to do so, they could get in legal trouble for not complying. While it is hopeful that the service member will provide financial support to their family or children voluntarily, it is not uncommon for military commanders to have to step in and get involved.

If the commander is unable to provide a solution or the service member still fails to give financial support, you can also get in touch with your local Judge Advocate General (JAG) office. While they will do their best to assist you, it is crucial that you consult with a San Antonio divorce attorney as soon as possible to discuss the process of developing a court order or agreement. The commander and JAG will encourage and persuade the soldier to provide you or your children with financial support, but you need an official legal order in place to ensure that you will get the proper support whenever needed.

Overall, AR 608-99 is a helpful tool, but it is important to remember that it is not meant to be used in place of a spousal or child support agreement. You must still take the appropriate steps to work with a divorce lawyer and create an agreement that works for you and takes care of your children.

At Grable Grimshaw, our San Antonio military divorce attorneys can help you reach an agreement regarding financial support. We know that those who are going through these types of divorces are faced with many challenges and obstacles along the way. Therefore, we will use our knowledge and experience to provide you with the legal assistance you need and deserve based on your situation. Simply call our office or complete our contact form to schedule your free case evaluation today, and we will begin providing the help that you need.