Frequently asked questions

Divorce cases are not easily handled by the parties involved because of the emotions associated with this type of event.  Consider at least consulting with an attorney first about your rights and options before deciding against hiring an attorney.  

In our view, it’s best to hire a divorce lawyer if you own real estate, have pension or retirement accounts, minor children involved, you need spousal support / alimony, or there’s disagreements on major issues.

Sometimes a home must be sold because it’s too expensive without both incomes or the parties need the proceeds in order to establish new places to live.

The marital home will be part of the property settlement in your divorce.  

If both parents agree on a schedule, usually the judge will approve it.  If you cannot agree on a schedule, the court will award visitation based on how it views the “best interests of the child”.  

In most states, including Michigan, the goal is to put the health and interest of the children first and to encourage a strong relationship with both parents.

Friend of the Court (FOC) assists the court in situations involving child custody, child support, and establishing parenting time.  FOC will make recomendations in cases where the parents cannot agree on major issues.

FOC also gets involved after the divorce to assist with disputes and also to ensure court orders are being followed.

In general, property and debts must be divided fairly and this usually means a 50/50 arrangement.  Property division will include assets you had prior to the marriage or acquired during your marriage if deemed necessary for a fair division.  Fair division wil not always mean a 50/50 split as there may be reasons to divide property differently.

Alimony or spousal support isn’t common in Michigan.   The court will take multiple factors into consideration on deciding if spousal support is necessary:  length of the marriage, your ability to work, what property you are awarded from the divorce, age, your spouse’s ability to pay,  your present situation, and many others.

This is an area where it’s best to consult an attorney early in the process.

Every case will be different.  Support will include a base amount plus additional amounts for child care (if applicable), education costs, and health care. The amount awarded is based on incomes, the number of children, number of overnight stays with each parent, and the  costs associated with child card, health care, etc.  For more information, here is a link to the Michigan Child Support Calculator.

Child Support orders should include an amount for what is deemed “ordinary medical expenses”.  Ordinary medical expenses could be co-pays on doctor visits or prescription medications.  

The custody parent typically is asked to provide receipts for the expenses and ask the other parent to pay their fair share.

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