The Family Law Leader

» Divorce

Q: I am in the middle of trying to negotiate a divorce settlement. I have been told that we must follow the Michigan support formula, but my wife and I agree that, under the circumstances, it is not necessary for me to pay as much support as the formula provides. We both make a very good living, and I have expended substantial funds for the children's travel athletics and other extracurricular activities. Can we deviate from the child support formula?

A: Unless either of you is receiving public assistance such as food stamps or Medicaid, it is permissible to deviate from the child support formula for a number of reasons. Th… Read More
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Q: I have been having trouble in my marriage and feel that it may be necessary to file for divorce. However, I am not sure this is what I am ultimately going to do. If I file the paperwork and then change my mind, what happens?

A: The decision of whether to file for divorce is a highly emotional and extremely complex one. If you hold out any hope that your marriage might be saved, I would encourage y… Read More
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Q: My wife and I are trying to settle our divorce and we are making good progress at resolving all of the issues out of court. As funny as it sounds, the only thing we are really arguing about is the dog. Our golden retriever has been a part of our family for several years and she means a lot to both of us. What will the court to do with this?

A: You would be surprised at how common this dispute has become, especially in families with children. The short answer is that a pet is considered personal property subject t… Read More
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Q: I have read that custody determinations are made based upon the best interests of the child. Shouldn't that always be a 50-50 parenting time arrangement? It just doesn't seem fair any other way.

A: You’re right; custody cases are decided based upon the best interest of the child factors contained in the Child Custody Act. However, there is nothing in that law th… Read More
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Q: I have heard of that Michigan is a no-fault divorce state. What does that mean?

A: You are correct. Michigan is a no-fault divorce state. However, that does not necessarily mean that fault is irrelevant in a divorce case. It used to be that, in order to o… Read More
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Q: I feel like it is not necessary to have the Friend of the Court handle my support case. Can I opt out of this service?

A: Yes. If you and the other party during your divorce or custody dispute, or after the judgment is entered, feel that Friend of the Court services are not necessary, you may… Read More
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Q: I just filed for divorce a few days ago and I got a notice from the Friend of the Court saying I need to come in for a coordination conference. What's that all about?

A: Many counties in Michigan are now using the Friend of the Court Coordination Conference as a mechanism to arrive at a temporary custody, parenting time, and support arrange… Read More
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Q: Will I have to pay alimony?

A: Alimony, or spousal support as it is now called, is still alive and well in Michigan. Depending on the length of the marriage, the disparity in earning power between you an… Read More
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Categories: Divorce, Spousal Support

Q: How much do you charge?

A: My standard hourly rate is $250. In most cases, I receive a retainer upfront of between $1500 and $2500, depending on the complexity of the matter. The simplest cases, wher… Read More
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Q: Isn't a 50/50 shared custody arrangement always the most fair to everyone?

A: Not necessarily. In determining custody, the court looks at what is in the best interests of the children. This inquiry takes precedence over the rights of the parents. Thi… Read More
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