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All divorces cause some trauma and emotional upheaval for the spouses going through it. There are many contentious issues, including property division, child custody, and spousal support. These three terms of divorce are typically what cause the most disagreements. Although these terms are discussed below, a Macomb County divorce attorney can explain them in further detail and help make the entire divorce process easier for anyone going through it.
Michigan is an equitable distribution state, which means that all property divided in Macomb County divorces will be divided fairly, but not necessarily equally. In a divorce, only marital property is divided. Marital property is any property that was acquired during the marriage. These assets can include vehicles, furnishings, investments, bank accounts, and retirement accounts. It is important to understand that debts are also considered property during property division hearings.
If the divorce enters litigation, a judge will determine how to divide these assets and debt. Judges take many factors into consideration when deciding on property division. Fault in the marriage, and the need for certain property, such as a business, are just two factors that a judge will consider.
During divorce proceedings, it may be determined that one spouse deserves spousal support. As in property division hearings, a judge has quite a bit of discretion in these proceedings. Since there is no specific formula for calculating spousal support, a judge will consider a number of factors. These may include the length of the marriage, the ability of either spouse to pay support, the work history and earning capacity of each spouse, and the standard of living the spouses enjoyed during the marriage.
A judge will also determine if spousal support is paid permanently, or as rehabilitative support, which essentially allows one spouse to get back on his or her feet before spousal support payments stop. If spouses do not wish to enter litigation, they can also agree to spousal support on their own.
There are two types of child custody in Michigan. The first is legal custody, which determines which spouse will make important decisions for the child, such as their education and the religion in which they will be raised. The second type of custody is physical custody, which determines who will primarily live with the child.
In Macomb County, as throughout the rest of the state, there are certain factors a judge must consider when deciding on child custody matters. There are 12 factors in total and they include the bond between both parents and the child, the capacity of each spouse to care for the child, and the willingness of each parent to foster a loving relationship between the child and the other spouse. All factors are based on what is in the child’s best interests.
If you are going through a divorce, it is important that you speak to a Macomb County divorce attorney. At Iafrate & Salassa, our attorneys can advise on all the terms of divorce and how to secure a fair settlement or verdict for you. We will also help finalize your divorce as quickly and easily as possible, so you can move on with your life. Call us today or contact us online to schedule a free consultation with one of our attorneys to learn more about how we can help.