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Divorce is never easy. Even if you and your spouse can remain amicable with each other, the process will still turn your life upside down as you prepare to move on separately from your spouse. A lot of the stress associated with the divorce process comes from the unknown. People do not know what to expect and they fear the worst. If you have decided to end your marriage, a divorce lawyer in Birmingham, MI can explain the entire process and advise on what you can expect. While divorce is never easy, sound legal advice can make it easier.
Anyone getting a divorce in Birmingham, MI must follow the no-fault laws of the state. No-fault divorces allow someone to divorce their spouse, even if their partner does not agree to it. It can also make the process easier, as no one needs to prove their spouse is at fault for ending the marriage in order to file. In fact, judges are not allowed to consider when the petition is originally filed. When filing for no-fault divorce, one spouse must only state there has been a breakdown of the marital relationship and that there is little chance of reconciliation.
Still, that does not mean fault is never considered during the divorce process. If your case goes to court, there are times when a judge may consider fault. These include when they are making decisions on property division, alimony, and child support. The classic example is when one spouse has an affair and spends marital funds on it. To compensate the other spouse for those marital funds, a judge may award them more in alimony.
Not all states recognize legal separations for married couples, but couples can get legally separated in Birmingham, MI. Some people choose to do this for religious purposes, to stay on their spouse’s health insurance policy, or for other reasons. Couples that wish to legally separate can file a petition with the court so their separation is officially recognized. This is known as separate maintenance in Michigan.
Even when getting legally separated, it is still important to draft an agreement, just as a divorce decree would act as an agreement once the case was finalized. A separation agreement can outline all of the same terms included in divorce decrees, including those pertaining to property division, child custody, and child support. With an agreement in place, it provides an outlet to resolve any dispute that comes up.
Divorce is a legal process just as it is an emotional one, and you do not want to go through it alone. At Iafrate & Salassa, our experienced divorce lawyers in Birmingham, MI have the necessary experience to help you through the process. We can explain the divorce laws as they apply to your case, negotiate with the other side, and help you secure the fair settlement you deserve. Call us today or fill out our online form to schedule a free consultation and to learn more about how we can help.