This post briefly guides the reader on how the award language is drafted in a military domestic relations order in the instance that the service member getting divorced is already retired.

In these cases, the calculations are much less complicated because high-36 is not involved.  You already know what the service member is making per month based on their pay stub.

And, what they are making per month need not be divided such that it is limited for purposes of a future calculation.

The method of calculating the community’s hypothetical percentage interest in the retired pay is as follows: Months married active duty / Months of creditable service.

Now that you have determined the percentage of the community’s hypothetical interest in the the retired pay, apply the percentage being awarded to the former spouse, and you will have the percentage that should be included in the “ORDERED” paragraph of the decree.

If the former spouse is awarded 50%, the percentage to include in the “ORDERED” paragraph of the decree would be the above percentage times 50%.

Therefore, the “ordered” paragraph should read something like: IT IS ORDERED AND DECREED that FORMER SPOUSE have judgment against and recover from SERVICE MEMBER the sum equal to 17.5% of the disposable retired pay of SERVICE MEMBER, payable if, as and when received by SERVICE MEMBER.

When the service member is retired at the time the divorce is granted, there is no necessity to put any limiting language regarding rank or longevity.