Former Spouse Protection Act

I have been one of the few members of Congress even willing to address this issue. After several years of introducing, but unsuccessfully passing comprehensive legislation designed to restore fairness to FSPA cases, I introduced an amendment to the National Security Committee as part of FY 1997 Defense Authorization Act that would have terminated payment of pensions to former spouses who remarry. However, another member of the committee offered a qualifying amendment that would have prevented retroactivity to those current cases where remarried spouses are receiving pension payment from their former veteran spouses.

After this roadblock was thrown up, I decided to withdraw my amendment because I want a lasting conclusion to this issue, including helping those veterans who are having their pensions cut today. I would like to continue to work with retiree groups who supported FSPA reform and with former spouse groups to reach some type of compromise on this issue. If these groups can reach an agreement on a set of provisions, I am encouraged that Congress will pass FSPA reform. If no agreement can be reached, we then will have to hold additional meetings or perhaps hearings to determine another course of action. In either case, I remain committed to FSPA reform and I remain hopeful that a focused strategy has the best chance of success.


Back to Hot Issues