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Get Answers To Common Questions About Family Law Topics In Michigan

A large part of what attorney Anne E. Lewis does for clients is answer questions. If she is your lawyer, she will personalize her responses to questions such as those below.

How do you file for divorce?

Typically, one spouse files a complaint with the court and the other spouse has to respond. If they do not respond, the divorce may be issued as a default judgment.

How long does it take to finalize a divorce?

There is a mandatory 60-day waiting period for any divorce. After that, the process typically takes 6 to 9 months.

Is Michigan a no-fault divorce state?

Every state is a no-fault divorce state. There are no states in which a spouse has to prove that the other did something wrong. That is, a spouse anywhere in the U.S. can get a no-fault divorce even if the other spouse disagrees. Either of you can testify that, “there has been a breakdown of the marriage relationship… no reasonable likelihood that the marriage can be preserved,” and with this declaration, a divorce process can begin.

Who pays for legal fees in a Michigan divorce?

Generally, each spouse pays their own lawyer. The spouse who files for divorce pays the court filing fees. However, some couples agree to different terms through their property division, spousal support and child custody negotiations. For example, the higher-earning spouse may be expected to pay court filing fees and part or all of the less affluent spouse’s attorney fees.

What is the difference between a contested and uncontested divorce?

A contested divorce is one in which there are one or more points of disagreement, such as whether one spouse will pay spousal support to the other. In a truly uncontested divorce, the spouses agree on everything without exception, and both will sign the “petition and request” for a consent order. The legal process is known as a summary proceeding for entry of consent judgment. Even though this is a relatively simple way to get a divorce, it is still highly recommended that you and your spouse each consult with an attorney before proceeding.

How is marital property divided in a Michigan divorce?

Michigan’s property division follows the equitable distribution rule. This means that assets are not necessarily split evenly, but fairly.

For instance, a judge may give more property to a spouse who needs it for their children. Or, a judge may give less to a spouse who is more at fault for the divorce. Determining a fair distribution is often difficult, which is where we can come in. We want to see that our clients are given what they deserve in a divorce – anything less is unacceptable.

How are child custody arrangements determined in Michigan?

Judges assume that children need a strong relationship with both their parents. This often means allowing parents to create an acceptable child custody arrangement. If parents cannot come to an agreement on their own, then the court will make all decisions.

At Anne E. Lewis, P.L.C., we often help parents petition a court to change a child custody arrangement to fit their child’s best interest. This may mean changing a custody arrangement so that it works around a parent’s new job or so that one parent has more time in a week to spend with their child.

How is child support calculated in Michigan?

Child support can greatly help parents who want to provide a more stable home for their children. Many factors must be considered when child support is calculated.

These factors often include the number of children needing support, parenting time allocations, each parent’s income and child care costs. Michigan has a state-mandated formula that can help calculate just how much a parent will need to pay in child support.

Am I able to receive spousal support in Michigan?

Spousal support can help ensure that each spouse is taken care of after a divorce. Our lawyers help many people who would be financially worse off after a divorce instead of receiving spousal support.

There is no easy calculation to determine spousal support, unlike child support. However, spousal support may be agreed upon between spouses. Otherwise, a judge may step in to determine whether a spouse is eligible for spousal support.

Get Answers To More Questions About Divorce And Family Law In Michigan

Schedule a consultation with attorney Anne E. Lewis and discover how her experience of more than 15 years in family law representation can benefit you. Call 616-818-1812 or complete an online form.