Does Divorce Litigation Mean a Trial?

Many people are seeking a divorce in Mid-Michigan but are concerned about the time and money involved. Their question is whether their divorce case has to end with a trial in court? 

The quick answer is no. There is certainly not a one-size-fits-all formula for a divorce, but there are many circumstances that lead to family law cases, including most divorce cases, being resolved without dragging your family through a trial. To understand the divorce process, let’s first break down marriage. A marriage is a type of contract. It involves both spouses and the state. For example, Michigan law describes certain rights and obligations that pertain only to married people. It’s a 3-way contract. Some people with a religious penchant would argue that the fourth member of the contract with their church. After all, most religions have restrictions and/or obligations they impose on a married couple. 

The very first obligation is to get a marriage license if you want to be considered to be legally married here in our state. But as you already know, there is far more government involvement than just getting a marriage license. There are laws concerning real estate that apply only to married couples, there is probate law for married couples, and even special tax laws that apply only to legally married couples. But, we’re off-topic now. So, let’s move back to how to end a marriage when that decision has been made by one or both spouses. 

Since marriage is a contract in Michigan, steps must be taken to essentially end the contract. First, you must file the divorce with the clerk in the county you are living in. If you live in Lansing, that means Ingham County, and if you live in Charlotte or Eaton Rapids, that means Eaton County. After your divorce attorney files the case in the appropriate county, there are many steps to be taken before you can stand before a judge to finalize your divorce. These steps can vary based on your situation and are complicated, but in the end, a judge will need to sign off on your agreement in order to cancel your marriage contract. 

However, don’t be confused! Standing before the judge to finalize your divorce is not the same process as going through a divorce trial in Michigan. The “pro-con” hearing to finalize your divorce case takes only 5 minutes or so. A divorce trial can last days or weeks. Our family law team resolves about 96% of our divorce cases without the need for a trial. 

Why Do I Need a Lawyer In The Divorce Litigation Process? 

The divorce process in Michigan is complicated, and as we said before, it will vary. When you decide to litigate your divorce, you should have an experienced divorce attorney on your side to fight for you, counsel you, and guide you through the entire process. Yes, choosing to have an attorney will cost you more, but as they say, you get what you pay for. And in the end, most people end up better off than they would have by them choosing to hire a highly respected family law attorney to represent them. Having the peace of mind to know there is a very high probability that our attorneys will get your case resolved without a divorce trial is one of the best reasons that hundreds of clients around Lansing, Jackson County, Eaton County, Clinton County, and mid-Michigan have worked with our firm since the last century. 

It may seem ideal to settle a divorce quickly, but often couples seeking a divorce have difficulty finding a compromise. Even though you might believe you have found common ground, there are often repercussions that you can’t anticipate on your own. When there is not an agreement between both spouses about things like child custody, visitation time, child support, or dividing assets and debts and retirement funds, it becomes essential to have a lawyer to advocate for your side. 

You can certainly choose to litigate your divorce without a lawyer, but you will still be expected to have the knowledge that a lawyer will have, which could end badly. People hire divorce lawyers for the same reason they hire surgeons. That’s because they realize that trained professionals know how to do the job correctly. 

I Have Decided To Hire an Experienced Divorce Attorney. What’s Next?

The divorce process in Michigan is usually confusing, complex, and contentious. If you have a proven divorce attorney on your side, some of your stress can be reduced. When you choose The Kronzek Firm, you can know that our attorneys will be prepared to handle anything that may come up. We’ll fight when a fight is needed, we’ll collaborate when that is needed, and we’ll get your case settled out of court when that’s possible! Contact us 24/7 at 517-886-1000 and let’s get started.