San Bernardino Military Divorce Lawyer


Divorce cases are complicated affairs for everyone involved. For military couples, this arduous legal process is further compounded by the unique considerations facing members of the military, such as location and residency, property division of unique military benefits, and geographical considerations for child custody and visitation.

By partnering with a qualified and experienced military divorce attorney you ensure you’ll have ample coverage over every minute detail of the steps for filing and the requirements for proper documentation in San Bernardino, CA.


The team of military divorce lawyers at the Edgar & Dow offers tough and comprehensive representation for servicemen and women. We believe that, as men and women who have already sacrificed so much for our country, you deserve even greater attention and advocacy. We proudly represent military men and women throughout Southern California’s military bases.

Our attorneys have been delivering favorable results to our clients for nearly two decades by prioritizing straightforward and honest representation and counsel. Divorce proceedings are often drawn out and complicated affairs, and we won’t shy away from telling you what you need to hear as it will ultimately benefit you more in the long run to understand all the requirements, timelines, and potential challenges.


While the essential procedure required to file for divorce is the same for military couples as it is for civilian couples, there are several unique situations that military spouses face that must be factored in: 

  • Residency. Filing for divorce is something you do in the state in which you reside. Often, however, servicemen and women will be relocated or stationed all around the United States and abroad, making it difficult to establish the six-month residency required to file.
  • Military benefits and asset division. In a divorce, your spouse may be entitled to a portion of various military benefits, such as a military pension, that have unique rules regulating its division in a divorce.
  • Child custody and visitation considerations. Because one or both spouses will likely continue serving in the military, particular accommodations must be made for arranging custody and visitation rights for military members, as the differences in geography will likely make standard arrangements difficult or impossible.

While the military offers free legal counsel, their lawyers cannot process or file the divorce for you. You will need to seek the help of a civilian lawyer, like those at the Edgar & Dow. As family law attorneys with a background of experience and knowledge in military divorce cases, our team can help walk you through the particulars of a military divorce case.


When filing for a military divorce, there are several situations that could further delay or prolong the divorce filing process, potentially extending the process time by several months. They include:

  • Deployment. If one or both spouses are on active duty when they are deployed abroad, serving them divorce papers in person, which is required by law before the process can begin, could take much longer.
  • Request for a stay. Military members can request a stay of proceedings under certain circumstances, such as being unable to be present for court proceedings on account of deployment. If a stay is granted, there will be a minimum of 90 days in which all further actions will be paused.
  • State regulations. California requires a minimum of six months waiting period, beginning from the time the divorce papers are delivered in person. This start time could be delayed further if there are issues establishing residency, as the state requires six months of in-state residency to be eligible to apply.

These and other factors unique to military divorces, as well as standard complications divorcing couples face, such as those in a contested divorce, could potentially present a prolonged and draining process ahead.


Q: How Does the Military Help With Divorce?

A: While the military does not directly handle divorce cases, the military will help you with your divorce proceedings by offering free legal advice and certain protections. Active-duty members, for instance, can have their divorce proceedings postponed. Additionally, the Uniformed Services Former Spouse Protection Act allows for military pensions to be divided by state courts. The military maintains a supportive role in order to make the process easier, such as communicating any and all legal implications of your divorce.

Q: How Long Does Military Divorce Take in California?

A: As with any divorce, the duration can be affected by the cooperation of both parties and the court’s schedule. However, military divorce does add some complexity of its own, leading to additional processing time. Generally, military divorces in California take between six months and a year, though it could be up to two years in some cases. This allows time for resolving jurisdiction issues, military benefits divisions, and disruptions such as deployment and other geographical separations that add time.

Q: How Fast Can You Get a Divorce in the Military?

A: For California military members, getting a divorce will take a minimum of six months. The state imposes a six-month mandatory waiting period beginning on the date the divorce petition is filed before it can be officially finalized. Since California requires divorce papers to be served in person, additional time may be necessary to track down a military spouse if they are in active duty or are stationed overseas.

Q: How Do You Get a Divorce While in the Military?

A: Filing for divorce requires the same processes and requirements for military members as it does for civilians, though there are a few additional considerations. For example, California has residency requirements to file for divorce in the state. You or your spouse must be stationed in the state or must be a resident in order to file. Once you meet the requirements, contact a divorce attorney with experience in military divorce to get started.


If you or your spouse are an active member of the military and are considering a divorce, don’t hesitate to speak with one of our experienced attorneys. It is important to understand everything involved in the process to reduce confusion and improve your preparedness. Divorces are complicated enough already without adding the complexity involved with military considerations. Let us guide you through the process and ensure everything is completed in the timeliest manner possible. Contact us today for your free consultation.

Schedule Your Free Consultation
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Why Trust Our Firm With Your Case?

  • Tailored Approach

    We know every case is unique and always provide personalized counsel.

  • Low-Risk & Low-Stress

    We don’t drag our cases out, which saves you time, stress, and money.

  • Honesty & Integrity

    We deliver the straightforward, honest counsel you really need.

  • Results-Driven Counsel

    Our priority is to help you get the results your family deserves.

The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship.

© Copyrights 2024 Edgar & Dow. All Rights Reserved. Disclaimer | Privacy Policy
Digital Marketing by rizeup-logo