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Michigan Family Law Blog

Friday, June 29, 2018

The Importance of Civility in Divorce Cases


Parties to a divorce should attempt to at least be civil to one another in order to get through the process without causing unnecessary litigation and costs.  When the parties to a divorce have children, it is imperative that the parties to treat each other decently even when they disagree for the sake of the children and because the failure to do so may result in a loss of custody or parenting time.

There are two forms of custody in Michigan, legal custody and physical custody.  Physical custody is the classic notion of which parent has the most time with the child or with whom the child lives.  Legal custody involves the parent's right to make decisions about the child's life, such as medical care, religious upbringing and school related issues.


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Monday, June 25, 2018

My Spouse is Threatening me - How Can I Get a Personal Protection Order?

When someone is harassing, threatening, or stalking another person, a personal protective order may be required to prevent the person from taking any action that continues the threat or harassment. An order of the court can prohibit a person from encountering another person to assault, harass, molest, abuse, or take any other action that can physically, mentally, or emotionally injure the protected person.

There are several requirements for obtaining a protective order; therefore, you want to work with an experienced...


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Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Seven Things You Didn't Know About Division of Debt During Divorce

If you are contemplating a divorce or going through a divorce, it can help to understand the laws and rules for dividing marital debt. Just like assets, debts are divided into marital debts and non-marital debts. However, a judge does not use this distinction as the only factor when dividing marital debt. Below are seven additional things our


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Tuesday, June 12, 2018

The Impact of Vaccine Stances on Child Custody in Michigan

Q: Can a disagreement on vaccinations impact child custody?

A skilled Michigan family law attorney understands that each family in transition has a unique family dynamic and requires a personalized approach to dissolving the marital union.

 


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Friday, June 8, 2018

An Order for Reunification with Children Requires an Evidentiary Hearing

In Michigan divorce and child custody cases, in order to modify parenting time, the party seeking the modification must show good cause or a change in circumstances.  If a party is able to meet this threshold inquiry, then the a court must hold a mini-trial (known as an evidentiary hearing) focused specifically on whether the modification is in the best interests of the child before it can order a modification or deny the request for the modification.  However, conditions and certain restrictions on parenting time or the removal thereof, typically do not require an evidentiary hearing for the judge to enter an order regarding the imposition or removal of the restrictions.

In the recent case of Ludwig v Ludwig, (a case that originated in the Oakland County Circuit Court), the trial court entered an order for the father, whose parenting time was suspended, and the children, to participate in a six-month reunification process.  The court ordered the children and the father to first engage in a video conference under the supervision of two therapists.


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Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Medical Marijuana, Child Custody and Parenting Time in Oakland County Michigan

Medical Marihuana, Child Custody and Parenting Time in Oakland County Michigan

 

An issue that comes up often in divorce consultations these days is how the use of marihuana may effect child custody or parenting time.  If a person is registered and has the proper medical marihuana licenses, then the Medical Marihuana Act (MMA) states that a person shall not be denied custody or visitation of a minor acting in accordance with this act.  So it seems that if one has a license to use marihuana then use of it should not effect custody or parenting time.  This applies to both providers (marihuana suppliers) and patients (marihuana users).  The family court division of Oakland County Circuit Court generally appears to accept these provisions and apply the protection.


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Tuesday, May 29, 2018

What Factors Does a Judge Consider for Supervised or Restricted Parenting Time?

When a judge orders supervised or restricted parenting time, it means that the judge has determined that this type of visitation between the parent and the child is in the best interest of the child. For some reason, the judge determined that allowing you to spend time with your child without supervision would be dangerous for or potentially harmful to your child. An order for supervised or restricted parenting time can be devastating for a parent. Our


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Friday, May 18, 2018

Why Did Russell Crowe Sell his Memorabilia Collection? A Divorce Attorney's Perspective


Russell Crowe's recent divorce has gained a lot of attention from the media, particularly because of the auction of his apparently vast collection of interesting movie memorabilia.  The memorabilia included the "jock strap" that Mr. Crowe wore in the movie Cinderella Man on the outside of his boxing gear.  Comedian John Oliver ended up purchasing this odd bit of history for eight thousand ($8,000) dollars, then donated the item to a Blockbuster Video in Alaska.  The Crowe family responded in a public announcement that they were donating the proceeds from the shots to help Koala's with Chlamydia and opened the John Oliver Koala Chlamydia Center.
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Monday, May 14, 2018

Unpaid Child Support Never Goes Away


The Detroit News reported a case on May 8, 2018 that I found interesting (and a little amusing) as a divorce lawyer in Michigan.  The News reported that a man by the name of Joseph Stroup was arrested in Canada due to outstanding child support from a 1989 Grand Rapids case.  Mr. Stroup was hiding out in Canada under the false moniker "Joop Cousteau", not to be confused with Jacques.  Apparently the man fled the country after his divorce in an attempt to avoid meeting his child support obligations and was living under an assumed identity.


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Friday, May 11, 2018

What Will Happen to The Marital Home in a Divorce?


One of the biggest assets that most people own is their residential property.  This is not only their home and place, it is also a large part of the nest egg.  People are often very concerned about what will happen with the marital home and how this asset is handled in a divorce case.

The Marital Home is Almost Always Considered Joint Property

Typically, the marital home where both parties reside is considered joint marital property and any equity in the home will be equally divided.  This is true regardless of how the home is titled or whether the mortgage is in the name of one or both parties.


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Monday, May 7, 2018

Will I Have to Pay for My Spouse's Attorney Fees in A Divorce?


Will I Have to Pay My Spouse's Attorney Fees in Divorce?

When it comes to attorney fees in general, Michigan courts follow the "American Rule".  That means that each party is responsible for paying for his, her or its own fees and costs regardless of whether or not that party has less economic means to afford it or whether that party wins or loses.  However when it comes to family law cases (divorce, alimony, custody, property division or support) then there is a different set of rules.  In this area, the court may order one party to pay for the other party's attorney fees from his or her own income or share of the marital estate. 

There are two instances where this may occur, the first is where one party has caused the other party to incur unnecessary costs and fees, typically by filing frivolous motions or trying to conceal assets.


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