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Divorce is typically an extremely emotional time for anyone going through it. The level of emotional upheaval during the divorce process will depend on the extent that the couple has already started to separate their lives, and whether each spouse accepts the situation and the terms of the divorce. Understanding how the divorce process works in Michigan can help anyone considering it prepare for it and know what to expect, which can make the process easier. A Birmingham, MI divorce lawyer can also help with the legal terms of divorce and securing the fair settlement you deserve.
Michigan is a no-fault divorce state. This means that anyone can get a divorce by stating that there has been a breakdown of the marital relationship to the extent that the marriage cannot be preserved. Individuals who want to file for divorce do not have to prove grounds of fault, and either spouse can start the process, even if the other person does not want a divorce.
Although divorces in the state are considered no-fault, that does not mean that fault will not play a part in the process. A judge may consider grounds of fault, such as addiction, adultery, or abuse when making decisions about alimony, property division, and child support.
Couples can choose either a contested or uncontested divorce in Michigan. Uncontested divorces are much simpler, as each party agrees to all terms of the divorce. In these instances, the couple will simply draft an agreement for a judge to approve and finalize the divorce. Couples that disagree on even one term of the divorce must seek a contested divorce, which is much more complicated.
Sometimes, people do not want to live as a married couple any longer, but they also do not want to get a divorce. The reasons for this are often religious, but some people want to keep the family unit together for the sake of the children, or so one spouse can keep the health insurance benefits that otherwise would be lost.
In these instances, the couple may opt for a legal separation instead of divorce. In Birmingham, this is called separate maintenance. Even when a couple decides to separate rather than divorce, they should still draft a separation agreement. An agreement can make the transition from living together to living apart much easier. Like a divorce decree, a separation agreement can outline the terms for child custody, child support, and property division in case a dispute arises in the future.
Divorce is one of the most stressful things a person can go through, and there are many complexities in the process, as well. If you are considering divorce, our experienced Birmingham, MI divorce lawyers at Iafrate & Salassa are here to help. Our experienced attorneys know how to obtain the results you need and can make the entire process easier on you. Call us today or contact us online to schedule a free consultation so we can get started on your case.