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The Divorce Process in Michigan

The Divorce Process in Michigan

If you are faced with a Divorce, one of the first things I think helps my clients is to understand the Divorce Process.  What can you expect? What steps need to be taken? What are your rights and responsibilities?

The first step in the legal process is the filing of the summons and complaint.  This sounds much scarier than it really is- it’s the paperwork filed with the Court saying that the person filing wants a divorce and what they are seeking out of the marriage.

The next step is to serve the other party.  This can be done several ways- talk to an experienced attorney to get help with serving the other party.  If it isn’t done right, it can affect and delay your case or even cause a dismissal!

The other party has either 21 or 28 days to answer, depending on how they were served.  If they don’t answer, the party who filed for Divorce can default them and proceed without their participation.  If they do answer, then the next step is to start negotiating

If you can’t come to an agreement, a good idea is to try mediation.  That is where a neutral third party gets involved to try to help the parties agree on how to divide their assets and what to do regarding custody, parenting time, and child support- if minor children are involved.

Another option is to get the Friend of the Court involved for any child custody, parenting time or child support issues.  The Friend of the Court can do an investigation and recommendation if the parties cannot come to an agreement on their own. 

If the parties still cannot agree, the Judge will schedule a trial date.  He or she will hear evidence on any disputed issues and make a decision regarding your assets and children based on what she hears.  You definitely don’t want to try this alone either!  Give our office a call for help getting a Divorce in Michigan today!