The military ID you hold due to your spouse’s service in the military allows you to retain medical coverage and other grants other privileges such as commissary and base exchange shopping. These are valuable benefits that you would not want to lose, even if you divorce. If you meet certain qualifications, you can retain your military ID after you divorce.
The 20/20/20 rule
If you have divorced and have not remarried, you can keep your military ID under the following circumstances. You must qualify under the 20/20/20 rule.
Under this rule, if you have been married for a minimum of 20 years, your spouse had 20 years or more of service in the military and there if there were a minimum of 20 years in which your spouse’s military service and your marriage coincided, you can keep your military ID.
The 20/20/15 rule
If you do not meet the 20/20/20 rule, it may still be possible to retain medical benefits for one year. To do so, you must qualify under the 20/20/15 rule.
This means that you must have been married for a minimum of 20 years, your spouse had 20 years or more of service in the military and there were a minimum of 15 years in which your spouse’s military service and your marriage coincided.
When domestic abuse is an issue
Sometimes a marriage ends because of domestic abuse. If this happens to you, you may retain a partial entitlement if your servicemember spouse lost their eligibility for retirement pay due to acts of domestic abuse.
Military divorce can be more complex than a civilian divorce, due to military ID benefits and privileges. If you have questions about your military ID and divorce, you can bring your concerns to a military divorce attorney for further counsel.