How does military divorce affect the servicemembers Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH)? The answer is contained in the Joint Federal Travel Regulation (JFTR), which governs BAH eligibility.
The servicemember remains eligible for BAH at the “with dependent” rate if:
- The ex-spouses share joint custody (i.e. joint managing conservatorship in Texas);
- The servicemember is the non-custodial parent; and,
- The servicemember’s child support obligation is equal to or greater than the difference between the BAH-DIFFERENTIAL (BAH-DIFF) rate for the servicemember’s grade.
The BAH-DIFF rate is the difference between the non-locality adjusted “with dependent” and “without dependent” BAH rate for the servicemember’s grade. For example, the 2014 BAH-DIFF rate for an E-6 is $292.20. The 2014 BAH-DIFF rates for an O-4 is $177.60. As long as the servicemember’s child support obligation is equal to or greater than those amounts, they’ll continue to draw BAH at the “with dependent” rate post-divorce.
For Attorneys, the reference for this article is the JFTR, Chapter 10, Paragraph 10106.D., “Legal Separation or Court Order Stating Support Amount.”
Author Jim Cramp is a retired active duty colonel and principal attorney at the Cramp Law Firm. The Cramp Law Firm provides a spectrum of family-related legal services in the greater San Antonio Region.