Do I need a JAG divorce attorney if my spouse or I are military?

Do I need a JAG lawyer?

No. There is no such thing as a JAG divorce attorney. While each base has a legal department, their role is not to pursue divorces (and, in fact, they may not even be licensed in Virginia). While there are not many differences in the law involving divorces between civilians and those in military service, there are unique topics and a few laws that require some additional experience and knowledge. While Virginia will have jurisdiction over any divorce proceedings, you want to be represented by an attorney who has experience with the military regulations/laws and factual issues that arise in these types of cases. As an example, one such law is the Uniformed Services Former Spouse Protection Act (USFSPA), which deals with the disbursement of pensions and use of the commissary after a divorce is finalized.

Kellam T. Parks
Managing Member of Parks Zeigler, PLLC