BASIC ALLOWANCE FOR HOUSING

Military woman  I have been involved in several military divorce cases where the service member makes an affirmative statement that their pay will significantly decrease once the divorce is final.  However, this is not fully factual.  If the service member does not get custody of a minor child to allow them to qualify for a payment (allotment) for Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) at the with dependent rate, they will  have the allotment for housing calculated at the without dependent rate which will lessen the allotment  However, if the service member is obligated to pay child support and the amount to be paid is equal to or more than the difference between the BAH allotment at the with and without dependent rates, then the service member will receive an additional payment called Basic Allowance for Housing Differential (BAH DIFF).  The combination of the BAH without dependents and the differentia payment will be equal to or be more than what the service member was receiving as Bah with dependents.   This means that the military member who does not have custody of the child(ren) does not end up with a loss of the Housing allowance.  The housing allowance (BAH) is simply calculated differently.  If the military member lives in government quarters  (on base) they will not receive BAH at all because they are not paying any rental or housing costs.  However, living on base still gest the military member the BAH DIFF as long  their child support obligation exceeds the difference of their BAH at the with and without rates.  The BAH rates can be found at http://www.dfas.mil/militarymembers/payentitlements/militarypaytables.

It must be remembered that when both parents are active duty members of the military and share joint custody, the government will not split the BAH or give it to both parents so be sure to have your lawyer account for this in any support orders or agreements that are entered .

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