Service members can receive compensation in a number of different categories. First, every service member will receive basic pay. This is their compensation for being enlisted as a service member. Certain service members will receive allowances in addition to their basic pay. BAH is the allowance for housing. This figure varies depending on the geographic area where the service member is due to differences in cost of living throughout the country. BAH should be added to the basic pay when determining income available for support. If a member is not receiving a housing allowance this may because they reside on base for free. In that scenario, the value of the benefit they are receiving in living for free should be imputed to them and tacked onto their income available for support.
There are several options in providing for child support of minor children when one of the parents is in the military. One option is the traditional method of pursuing court-ordered support through the state court with jurisdiction. Please note that the Servicemember's Civil Relief Act (SCRA), which mandates a stay on civil matters while a servicemember is on active duty, may interfere with the ability to quickly pursue a court order through a local court. A servicemember can elect to waive the protection provided by the SCRA and proceed with any civil matter, including family law issues, at their discretion. Any such waiver should be writing.