My question involves divorce in the State of: Connecticut
My name's Ken. I'm active duty in the Navy since March 2008. Long story short, I filed for divorce from my wife who I have not seen since I joined the Navy a year and a half ago. We have been married since Feb 2005. Before the Navy neither of us had a steady income or paid support. We basically eloped and lived in seperate states for most of our marriage. She has lived in Washington state since I left for bootcamp. No kids, no assets, no major debts.
After bootcamp, my wife told me she was unfaithful and I told her to get lost. I was still a Florida resident until May 10, 2009, so I couldn't get a divorce in CT until then. My divorce papers were filed May 18, she did not respond to service. At all. Court ordered to serve papers by publication, so I did. No appearance or contact from her. Nothing.
Meanwhile, in Feb 2009, she contacted the Navy saying I wasn't supporting her. I hadn't seen or spoken to her in a year. The Navy has a catch all manual for this situation (MILPERSMAN 1754-030 Click Here To View) that says the Navy recommends providing her with 1/3 of my take home pay. This is roughly $1000 a month. The Navy gave me an Administrative Counseling/Warning (AKA Page 13) stating "Servicemember has been instructed that it is his responsibility to provide 1/3 gross pay of $2914.70 a total of $971.57 will be paid to your spouse monthly." I fought it with the Navy, even went to congress asking for help. The Navy won. So I'm stuck paying $1000 a month to her until we are divorced in October.
My security clearance is affected if I do not pay her, and the Navy has made it clear in writing that I can be administratively separated if I don't send the checks monthly.
The total amount she has received since February is roughly $4000, because I was able to fight it for awhile and not pay.
Now, my divorce is uncontested because she has evaded me and the court serving papers whatsoever. She seems to not care if we're divorced, just wants to cause problems.
The Jag Office tells me to ask the judge for recoup of the money paid in support, since I don't know if she makes more than I do, plus there are no kids or family to be supporting. They say that $1000 a month is more than the court would have me pay if I had 3 or 4 kids and made twice the paycheck I do.
Can I ask for recoup for these support checks in an uncontested divorce where she is not present on the court date?