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Duration and location of military deployment linked to divorce

It isn't difficult to understand how the deployment of a married service member to a war zone can put a strain on a marriage. Given the recent talk of possible military action by the United States, this seems like a perfect time to discuss how war can affect marriages and families here in New Jersey.

According to a new study by Rand Corp., where a service member is deployed and for how long relate directly to the risk of divorce for military spouses.

Researchers gathered data from 462,444 service members who started their marriages during their military service. These service members were in the military during about a 9-year period starting in March 1999 and ending in June 2008.

The study showed that deployed military members who were married before the 2001 terrorist attacks were more likely to divorce than deployed military members who were married after the attacks. This might suggest that military couples who decided to marry after Sept. 11, 2001, were more prepared for the family difficulties that arise from deployment.

It was also shown that service members who were deployed to hostile war zones faced a greater chance of divorce than military personnel deployed to less hostile areas. And the longer a service member stayed deployed, the greater chance there was that he or she would divorce.

Women who were deployed to war zones also faced a greater chance of divorce than men who experienced similar deployments.

New Jersey spouses considering divorce need to be aware of their rights and responsibilities. Regardless of a person's professional and financial situation, the process of divorce is usually a time of immense emotional upheaval, and it is important for divorcing spouses to know that they have their legal bases covered.

Source: startribune.com, "Military affairs beat: Study ties the time in combat to divorce risk," Mark Brunswick, Sept. 10, 2013

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