I am the father of 3 small children. I have been the primary care-giver because I work
from home and my wife works outside the home. My wife’s job requires extensive
travel and when in town, she has evening meetings several nights a week. If I file for
divorce will my wife automatically get custody because she’s the mother.
I am separated with minor 2 children. How long will it take to get a Divorce?
The Michigan Law requires that Divorces with children have a 180 day waiting period. This is an important period allowing the children time to adjust to an absent parent, new parenting time arrangements, or in some cases a new home, new school. There is a crisis in the family and during this time adjustments can be made to assist the entire family in healing and finding a livable compromise prior to any final judgment being entered. [Top]
I found out my husband had an affair. He said if I file for divorce I will be penniless. Since I haven’t worked outside the home prior to having children 15 years ago, what can I expect?
Although two can indeed live cheaper than one, divorce does have implications when it comes to the lifestyle married parties have come accustom. In the onset of your divorce, your husband will be required to pay child support, and if your situation meets certain criteria, he could be required to pay short term spousal support. During the coarse of the divorce however, an Order for Status Quo can be entered to sustain the living structure, conditions, and needs of the family. [Top]
What is Mediation and why are some people choosing to participate?
Mediation is a where a trained and certified neutral 3rd party facilitates an agreement between the parties involved without litigating publically in a packed courtroom in front of a judge. The Mediator is trained in assisting the parties to communicate their positions on various issues. Mediation is less costly than litigation, more timely than litigation, less destructive than litigation, and Mediation is Private! [Top]
I am thinking about filing for divorce but Im afraid that my husband will fight me for custody of the children. Is it possible that I could lose my children?
Unless there is a history of child abuse or neglect I doubt that you will lose custody of your children. There are many custody arrangements: such as Joint or Sole Physical Custody, Joint or Sole Legal Custody. Joint physical has many arrangements: One week with one parent- the next week with other parent; with one parent during the week - the other parent on the weekends; with one parent during the school year - with other parent during school breaks, etc. The Court will consider what the availability of each parent is for the children as far as work schedules, personal obligations such as college, etc. However, different custody arrangements differently impact the amount of the child support obligation. [Top]
My ex-husband has lost his job and has been asking me if I would stop his child support. Can I do that?
In certain circumstances you can. However if you are or have been on state assistance, it is not all money that is due to you and therefore you may have no control or right to forgive your exhusband’s child support. You will need to obtain a new Court Order to have your child support lowered or modified. [Top]
My son is 16 years old and has been living with my ex-wife and his sisters since the divorce. Is he now old enough to decide where he wants to live?
I can understand a 16 year old boy thinking he would prefer to vacate a house full of women and live with his father. If your exwife will agree, it can be a very simple process. If she does not agree the Judge will be looking for a change in circumstances that qualifies for a change in custody. The judge may also request an interview with the minor child. [Top]
My wife is the one who wants a Divorce. Will I really have to pay child support?
If you have a child born during your marriage, the answer is Yes! if she is awarded full physical custody. Just because it is your wife that wants the divorce should in no way harm your child(ren) and their right to have the support, financial & emotional, of both parents. Your support will be determined based on your income as well as her income, and the custody arrangements and custody Order entered by the Court. [Top]
My husband has been having an ongoing affair with a co-worker. I am filing for divorce and want to stick it to him. Can you help?
Typically the starting point for the division of the marital property is 50/50. This equation holds true for couples where one spouse worked and the other stayed home. The Court recognizes the value of the duties performed by a non-working spouse and does not give a greater percentage of property to the working spouse. The scale may and can tip in favor of a spouse who was wronged by the other, such as extramarital affairs that was public & non-discrete, in the presents of the couple’s children or family members, character assassination of a spouse, professional damage, or embarrassment in the workplace or place of worship. Although divorce in Michigan is No-Fault and property division is usually 50/50 but, the Judge can use his/her own discretion in the proportions of property division. [Top]
My wife had a child before we were married that I adopted after we got married. We are filing for divorce and I wanted to know if I would have to pay child support on her child.
First of all that child is now yours due to your adoption. I hope that the divorce will not cause you to feel otherwise. One of the functions of Family Court is to protect the rights of children. Each child has the right to the support, emotionally and financially, by their parents. You will be obligated to pay support and I hope that you continue a presence in the life of this child. [Top]
The Court Ordered that I pay my wife’s attorney fees for the divorce action that she started.
The Court does often Order that a spouse cover the cost of the attorney representing the other spouse. If your incomes are equal or the other party’s income is greater, then there is justification in requesting that your attorney object to your paying attorney fees. Provide evidence supporting such an objection and the judge may not Order you to pay the attorney fees. [Top]
My wife has threatened me with divorce. She also said that she was going to have me removed from the house. Can she do that?
It is rare that a family in crisis can live in harmony throughout the divorce process. If you have a history of emotional or physical abuse it may be a good idea that you discontinue living together. The entire family, both spouses and any children living in the home may be under tremendous stress during this time. The Court recognizes this and if one spouse request exclusive use of the home, it is typically granted. [Top]
I am the father of 3 small children. I have been the primary care-giver because I work from home and my wife works outside the home. My wife’s job requires extensive travel and when in town, she has evening meetings several nights a week. If I file for divorce will my wife automatically get custody because she’s the mother.
Not necessarily. There is a martix called the “Best Interest of the Child” with 12 different factors that address the significance of each parent in various aspects in the lives of their children. Each factor is evaluated and it is decided whether the father or the mother score highest in each factor. The parent who acquires the most preference overall is generally awarded custody. The Family Court Judge is required by law to entertain and consider the outcome of this evaluation when making custody decisions. [Top]