Welcome back and thanks for joining us here for this discussion about how to file for divorce in Michigan. In the previous article we discussed the first things you’ll need to do if you’re considering getting divorced in Michigan without help, starting with making sure you’re eligible, and then having some very important discussions with your spouse, about things like child custody and child support.
You’ve covered some very important bases so far. But that’s only the beginning. There are still a lot of things you have to deal with – many ‘I’s that need dotting and ‘T’s that need crossing, as it were. And next on the list is another is something very important that needs to be addressed – alimony.
Talk to your spouse about the matter of spousal support
Not every divorcing couple has to deal with the issue of spousal support. Some couples part ways and because each of them has a decent job, or they’ve got not kids and haven’t been together very long, the issue of alimony just doesn’t really come up. But for those couples whose income potential is distinctly different (usually courtesy of one staying home to raise children, or because the one spouse supported the other during school) alimony can be a big deal. Depending on your situation, you and your spouse will need to come up with a figure that works for both of you.
Fill out all of the required forms
Depending on your situation, this may be a pretty straightforward job, or a major endeavor. If you have children, you will need to fill out a parenting plan. There are different types of parenting plans available, depending on whether your children are in school, younger than school age, or you plan on having one parent live far away, which would change their visitation schedule. You will then need to fill out all of the other required forms, which includes…
File your documents with the court
Your divorce won’t be legal until it’s been filed with the court in the county where you live. So print out all of those forms (assuming you did them online) and hustle yourself down to your local courthouse. You don’t have to make an appointment, but you will need to show up during normal business hours. Remember, you will also need to pay the $175 filing fee (unless you have children – then it’s a $225 fee), and the $80 dollar judgment fee. If for some reason you can’t pay this, you’ll need to print out a fee waiver form and turn that in to the court as well.
Now you need to serve your spouse the divorce papers
Now that you’ve officially filed for divorce, you’ll need to serve your spouse their ‘notice’ (called a summons and complaint) of the divorce. By law, you have to have someone else serve them their notice. This could include a police officer or sheriff’s deputy, a friend or relative, a professional process server, or by sending a copy via certified mail.
All divorces are easier when you have help from a good attorney!
It’s entirely legal, and completely possible to get divorced yourself without any help from an attorney. But it’s often much harder, and much messier. Aside from all the paperwork and dates you need to keep straight, there’s the issue of protecting your rights in an contested divorce. Oh, and if you and your spouse aren’t parting ways on good terms, then things like asset division, child custody and support, and even alimony can be extremely difficult to figure out. And that’s where a good divorce lawyer comes in.
Having a skilled and experienced divorce attorney on your side makes every aspect of the process easier. We’ve been doing this for decades, and we have a long track record of success. So call 866 766 5245 today, and get help from someone who has your best interests at the top of their agenda, and decades of experience protecting people’s rights during divorce. And join us next time for the wrap up of this list.