Divorce Notice of Appearance by Attorney Colorado Working with the Department of Defense Domestic by wmc14115


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									  Working with the
Department of Defense
  Domestic Relations Association of Pennsylvania - October 3, 2005

Policy and Procedures (including ―practice tips‖)
Servicemembers Civil Relief Act
– Stays
– Default Judgments
Defense Finance & Accounting Service
– Military Pay
– Statutory Allotments
– Medical Support
Military’s Organization

Department of Defense (DoD)
Branches of Services
 – Department of the Army
 – Department of the Navy (includes Marine
 – Department of the Air Force
Department of Homeland Security
(includes Coast Guard)
         5.3 Million Strong

      1.4 million active
      654,000 civilians
      1.2 million Guard
      and Reserve
      2.0 million
      retirees &
      families receiving

America’s largest company
         Worldwide Mission
          More than 146 countries
          Some 473,881 personnel overseas or afloat

America’s largest company
         In Comparison . . .

  Company         Revenue*      Employees*

  DoD           $371 billion     2,036,000
  Wal-Mart        227 billion    1,383,000
  ExxonMobil      200 billion      97,900
  GM              181 billion     365,000
  Ford            160 billion     354,400

America’s largest company
Chain of Command

Secretary of Defense
                                Corps or Large Installation
Secretary of the Army
                              Division or Installation

                             Brigade or Regiment

      Army Chief of Staff   Battalion or Squadron

      Major Command         Company, Battery or Troop


Rank vs. Pay Grade

 – Different for each Service
 – Example: Captain - Air Force
               Captain - Navy
Pay Grade (Numbered 1 thru 10)
 – O for Officer
 – E for Enlisted
 – WO for Warrant Officer
        DoD’s “Periodic Table”
Officer = O

                             Enlisted = E   10



              Officer = WO                  6





Department of Defense

       Are To Be
  Fiscally Responsible
   For Their Children
Leave & Liberty

Dep’t of Defense Directive 1327.5
Mandates the Service member’s commander
to grant leave for paternity and support
 – Service member is deployed in a war
 – Exigencies of military service require a
   denial of such a request.
 Service Regulations

 Army  - AR 608-99
 Air Force - AFI 36-2906
 Navy - SECNAVINST 7431.1
 Marine Corps - Marine Corps Order
  P5800.16 (LEGADMIN) Ch. 15
 Coast Guard - PERSMAN Chapter

                             A Caseworker’s
                             Guide to Support
                             Enforcement and
                             Military Personnel

 Practice Tips

 Need  Social Security Number
 Follow Chain of Command When
 Recognize Commander’s Limitations
 Use Military Sources:
   Inspector General
   Legal Office
Service of Process

 Jurisdictional
 Personal Service
 Service Overseas
   http://travel.state.gov/service_general.html
 Facilitating Service of Process

Army:                          Navy:
Office of the Judge Advocate   Office of the Judge Advocate
    General                        General (Code 16)
Attn: DAJA-LA                  1322 Patterson Avenue, SE
2200 Army Pentagon             Suite 3000
Washington, D.C. 20310         Washington Navy Yard, D.C.
(703) 588-6708                 20374-5066
                               (202) 685-4637
     Facilitating Service of Process
Marine Corps:                         Coast Guard:
Paralegal Specialist (Ms. Flores)     United States Coast Guard
Headquarters, US Marine Corps (JAR)   G-PC (USCG)
                                      Room 4100E, CGHQ
2 Navy Annex                          Department of Transportation
Quantico, VA 22134                    Washington, D.C. 20590
(703) 784-3681                        (202) 267-2799

U.S. Air Force:
1420 Air Force Pentagon
Washington, D.C. 20330-1420
(703) 697-0413
The Servicemembers’
   Civil Relief Act

SSCRA of 1940
 – Reenactment to protect those ―called to arms‖
 – Enactment of 6% interest rate cap (old §526)
1991 Amendments
 – Desert Shield/Storm
 – Partial update; increased certain amounts;
   added non-discrimination provisions and
   suspension of malpractice insurance for health
   care professionals
  New & Improved SCRA

On 19 December 2003, President Bush signed
the SCRA, a complete revision of the SSCRA.
The SCRA was written to:
– clarify the language of the SSCRA
– to incorporate and codify many years of judicial
  interpretation of the SSCRA
– to update the SSCRA to reflect developments in
  American life since 1940
A Shield Not A Sword

“Although the Act should be read
liberally and afford generous
protection to the Service member, the
protection does have its limits.”

Le Maistre v. Leffers 333 US 1 (1948)
    Who’s Covered?

Active Military
– Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard
– Reservists called to Active Duty
– National Guard in Title 10 Status or - Title 32 Status if called to
  active duty for more than 30 days for purposes of responding
  to a national emergency declared by the President and
  supported by federal funds
Not Applicable to:
–   Civilian Employees
–   Retirees
–   DoD contractors
–   Dependents*

            *Certain protections may apply to contractual obligations of dependents (e.g., lease terminations )
What’s Covered?

Judicial Proceedings
Administrative Proceedings (as of Dec
Entry of Interim Orders (as of Dec 2004)
Entry of Final Orders
The SCRA has very limited affect on
the enforcement of orders
  6% Rate Cap
SCRA rule on interest

New law clarifies that interest above 6% must be
forgiven (some creditors were deferring interest)

Applies to child/spousal support arrearages

Applies to only those arrearages incurred prior to
induction on active duty

Material affect analysis applies

Under the Act, Servicemember must request the
cap and send orders
  Recent Amendments (S.2486)

Section 701 amended SCRA to broaden the term
“judgment” to mean any judgment, decree, order
or ruling final or temporary

Section 702 related to the requirements for
inserting waiver language into legal documents

Section 703 makes the protections of the SCRA
available to plaintiffs and defendants
Stay of Proceedings

   Automatic stay for 90 days

   If subsequent request for a stay is denied,
    court must appoint an attorney

   Length of stay after the first 90 days

   Application for a stay does not constitute a
    general appearance
Subsequent Stays

Court has the discretion to grant or
deny the stay.
If the Court denies the stay, it must
appoint an attorney to represent the
  Proper Requests for Stay

Two fold request:
– Communication from the
  Servicemember setting forth
  • facts in which current military duty
    requirements materially affect his/her ability
    to appear
  • and stating a date when the servicemember
    will be available to appear.
  Proper Requests for Stay

Two fold request (continued):
– Letter from the Servicemember’s Commanding
  officer affirming the following:
  • that the servicemember's military duty prevents an
  • and that military leave is not authorized for the
    servicemember at the time of the letter.
  • If this letter contains servicemember’s available
    court dates, the court may deem the letter sufficient
    to pass the two fold test.
    Default Judgments

   Affidavit of military/non-military status

   Court-appointed attorney

   Availability statement
   Service member may reopen default
Default Judgments

Applies to all of the following:
– Final Judgments
– Interim Orders (New)
– Court Orders
– Administrative Support Orders but
  not to administrative enforcement
  remedies, such as liens, wage
  withholdings and the like.
    Default Judgments
Defense Manpower Data Center (DMDC)
Provide Certificate as to Military Service on the
Internet – Acceptable documentation to show
whether he/she is in the military.
Requires application and password
Fax request for application to 703-696-4156 or letter
to DMDC, Military Verification, 1600 Wilson Blvd,
Suite 400, Arlington, VA 22209
Default Judgments

If Defendant is not in the military, the plaintiff
may proceed to final judgment

If Defendant is in the military, the court is
required to appoint an attorney for the
Appointed Counsel

When Defendant is in the service -
Must appoint prior to granting default

Duties of appointed attorney
– Protects Service member’s rights
– Determines status and seeks stay

Can’t waive rights or bind Service
Reopening Default Judgments

Service member can request court to
re-open judgment anytime during
Service member’s Military Service

Service member/attorney can also file
an application to re-open within 90-
days of end-of-military service
Defense Finance & Accounting
       Service (DFAS)
DFAS Garnishments

 Responsibilities

 Staffing/Workload

 Process   Workflow
 Systems

 Pay   Systems
    DFAS Responsibilities

All child support/alimony garnishments for DoD civilian
 and military personnel and DOE

USFSPA applications for court-ordered divisions of
 military retired pay

Commercial garnishments - civilian employees

Military commercial debt involuntary allotments

Chapter 13 bankruptcies for military retirees and active
 duty Navy
    DFAS Workload

   Orders Processed:
                  FY 2000        136,510
                  FY 2001        149,032
                  FY 2002        191,710
                  FY 2003        216,297
                  FY 2004        278,553

   Average Monthly Pay Out: $50 - $60 Million
                   447,450 Active Cases
DFAS Initiatives


 DFAS Kids 1st Program
 – Child Support Enforcement Agencies Send Orders
    Directly to DFAS Over the Web or by Batch Process

  Web Based - Implemented May 2000
      Ohio - Hawaii - Guam - Oklahoma - Wisconsin
      New Mexico - Utah - Idaho - Georgia

  Batch Process - Implemented September 2001
      Texas - South Dakota - Iowa - Colorado
      West Virginia - Oregon
DFAS Contacts

    Send garnishment orders to:

             P O Box 998002
        Cleveland, OH 44199-8002

  Customer Service: 1-866-859-1845
 Website: http://www.dfas.mil/garnish
       Military Pay

• DoD Pay Tables - www.dfas.mil/money/milpay.pay
• BAH - www.dtc.mil/perdiem/bah.html
(Contains BAH tables & zip code feature to search by)

• LES - www.dfas.mil/money/milpay
(Click on pay-military; Scroll to “Military LES”)
     Military Pay

 Establish support in accordance with state
 Military Base Pay by rank and time in service


  -BAH (Basic Allowance for Housing) - Amount increases with rank

  -BAS (Basic Allowance for Subsistence)
Military Pay

• Special Skills Pays

   —Flight pay
   —Hazardous duty pay
   —Career sea pay
   —Submarine duty pay
   —Jump pay
   —Many others

• Bonuses
   (Lump-sum, usually for re-enlisting)
             Pay System Addresses
      Obtain Service Members’ Payroll Information
      from the Appropriate Military Finance Center
Air Force Active Duty, Air Force Reserves   Navy Active Duty, Navy Reserves, All Military
& National Guard                            Retirees
DFAS Denver                                 DFAS Cleveland
Attn: DFAS DE-GA                            Attn: DFAS CL-GAF
6760 Irvington Place                        1240 East 9th Street
Denver, CO 80279-8000                       Cleveland, OH 44199

                                            Marine Corps Active Duty
Army Active Duty, Army Reserves & Army      DFAS Kansas City
National Guard                              Kansas City Center (FCRAF)
DFAS Indianapolis                           1500 East 95th Street
Attn: DFAS IN-FJEF                          Kansas City, MO 64197-0001
8899 East 56th Street
Indianapolis, IN 46249-0865                 Marine Corps Reserve Duty
                                            DFAS Kansas City
                                            Kansas City Center (FPPR)
                                            1500 East 95th Street
                                            Kansas City, MO 64197-0001
         Statutory Allotments
• “Allotment” is a Misnomer: These are Wage Withholding Actions!
                  Active duty military pay and allowances

• Prerequisites

  – A court or administrative order establishing a child support (or spousal and
  child support) obligation

  – An arrearage in an amount equal to or greater than two months support under
  the obligation

• Procedure
  – Court or state CSE agent sends notice to DFAS requesting initiation of an
  involuntary allotment

  – ―Notice‖ is a letter signed by designated person (32 CFR, Part 54.3)
    Statutory Allotments

Include the member’s name and Social Security Number; a
statement that there are arrearages equal to or greater than 2
months support and the date the allotment should stop

The allotment will be for the amount of the monthly support

For arrearages-request must ask for and have a court or
administrative order requiring the payment of accrued
   Stringent legal requirements for direct payment

     Final order from court of competent jurisdiction
         No Foreign Courts

     Jurisdiction over the member
         Residence in the jurisdiction by reason other than military
         Domicile
         Consent

     SCRA if member is on active duty at time of divorce

     10/10 Rule - Marriage must be at least ten years that
      overlaps with ten years of creditable service
    USFSPA Update

Other Considerations

   Maximum Payment:
     50% of disposable pay
     If combined with garnishment order - 65% maximum

   Order should award fixed amount or percentage
     Limited approval of formulas and hypotheticals
         All information needed to compute a formula except the total
          months of service, must be supplied in the court order (See our
Medical Support
   All Medical Support Orders for DoD go to DMDC
   Must Be Enrolled in DEERS
   To Check if Dependent Child is Enrolled
     DMDC Support Office
     Attn: CAG
     400 Gigling Road
     Seaside, CA 93955-6771
   Enrollment -
      Nearest Location 1-800-538-9552 or web site
      http://www.dmdc.osd.mil/rsl/owa/home--RAPID’s Adress
      Need Name & SSN of Obligor Plus Name, SSN and
       Date of Birth of Child
      Medical Support
   The National Medical Support Order does not apply to
    active duty and retired military members

   However, DMDC will respond to National Medical Support

   Do not send medical support notices to DFAS!

   What about reservists?

   DoD Civilians?-coming soon, the addresses for the
    employees HR office will be on the new hire and Q/Wage
  Military Websites
Department of Defense
www.defenselink.mil The DoD website with information about
  and links to the Department of Defense
www.dfas.mil Provides information about the Defense Finance
  and Accounting Service (DFAS)
www.dmdc.osd.mil The website of the Defense Manpower
  Data Center that allows registered users to verify if an
  individual is in the military service
www.army.mil Contains links to Army sites, including Army
   installations and publications
http://www.army.mil/installations/default.htm Contains
   comprehensive links to all Army installations and their
   Military Websites
www.navy.mil Contains links to Navy sites
   Provides a list of homeports and the ships assigned to them
   with FPO addresses
Air Force
www.af.mil Contains links to Air Force sites
http://www/af.mil/sites/alphabetical.shtml#a Contains an
   alphabetical listing of Air Force locations around the world
   with site links
Marine Corps
www.usmc.mil Contains links to Marine Corps sites
The Department of Defense
    Domestic Relations Association of Pennsylvania - October 3, 2005

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