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Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Considering Getting Divorced After the Holidays in Michigan?


Q: I Am Thinking About Filing For Divorce After the Holidays.  Is There Anything I Should Do Now?

When you’re getting divorced in Michigan, there can be many different issues to resolve.


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Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Alimony in Gross Vs. Periodic alimony in Michigan


This blog is about alimony.  In Michigan, we call it spousal support but it is the same thing.  There are different types of alimony that one might pursue in a divorce.  A 
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Friday, July 12, 2019

A Short Blog About Vehicle Expense Deductions and Divorce


In some divorce cases, the court has to go through the parties finances with a fine-tooth comb in order to sort-out what is the appropriate income to use for calculating alimony or child support.  In the recently decided case of Eubanks v Hendrix, Michigan Court of Appeals No. 344102, May 23, 2019; the appellate court found that the referee and the court in that case did not quite get far enough into the nitty-gritty of the parties finances.

While some items and expenses may be allowed as deductions for tax purposes, the same deductions are not always allowed when determining a person's income for alimony or child support.  In the Eubanks case, the mother questioned how the court calculated the father's income, particularly the deduction for his vehicle.
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Monday, July 8, 2019

How is a Parent's Income Determined for Child Support in Michigan?


Child support is determined by a formula.  Base child support takes both parties incomes and the number of overnights each parent has with the child or children and plugs those numbers into a formula.  The formula then determines the base child support that one parent will pay to the other.  The formula will also calculate a health insurance adjustment, an out of pocket health care expense adjustment and a child care adjustment until a August after a child's twelfth birthday. 

This is relatively straight forward if each parent is a "W-2" employee, someone who is paid a standard monthly amount by a regular employer (not a family business or self-owned business) each month without receiving perks like the free use of a vehicle.


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Sunday, June 30, 2019

How Do I Modify My Spousal Support or Alimony?


f you’re considering getting divorced in North Oakland, Michigan, you might have an idea about the issues you need to work out with your soon-to-be ex-spouse, but there may be unexpected issues, too.

Even if you don’t have the added emotional burden of working out child custody, visitation, and support for your minor children, virtually all divorcing couples have to address two questions: whether one spouse will pay the other alimony and how will the couple’s stuff get divvied up?

It’s best if couples can agree on who gets what, because if they can’t agree then a judge will decide. 


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Tuesday, April 23, 2019

What if My Spouse Makes Cash Money That Isn't Reported to the IRS?


In a divorce case, one of the biggest factors that the court will consider when granting or denying alimony is the parties' incomes.  Many people are concerned that their spouse either works in an occupation that involves cash tips or the other spouse may own a business that handles cash but the parties have not reported this income to the Internal Revenue Service during the marriage.  The concern (other than potential issues with the IRS - the divorce court or judge will typically not report such activity to the IRS) is that the court will not consider this income when calculating alimony with a result of an inequitable alimony award.

Proving Cash Income in a Divorce Case 

Fortunately there are many ways that the court will allow a spouse to prove income in a divorce.  In one recent case decided by the Michigan Court of Appeals, Csercse v Csercse, March 19, 2019; the lower court awarded alimony to the wife for two (2) years after a three (3) year marriage based upon a number of factors, including the dominating and abusive nature of the husband.


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Thursday, February 7, 2019

Terminating Alimony In Michigan Can Be Difficult (But Not Impossible)


Terminating Alimony In Michigan Can Be Difficult (But Not Impossible)

Many people seem to believe that alimony (aka spousal support) is no longer awarded in divorce cases.  This is wrong, alimony is alive and well and can be granted in any case where there is an income disparity.  There are very basically two types of alimony, modifiable and non-modifiable.  Non-modifiable alimony is relatively new in comparison and can only be ordered by the court in cases where the parties have reached an agreement that specifically states that the support will be non-modifiable and that the parties waive their rights to modifiable alimony.  Modifiable alimony is the type of alimony that exists in all other cases where support is ordered by the court.


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Saturday, December 15, 2018

Should I File For Divorce Before The End Of The Year?


Should I File For Divorce Before The End Of The Year?

Most of the time it really does not make much difference whether one files for divorce before the end of the year.  If one wants to wait until the holidays are over until dealing with a potential divorce, typically that will not effect the outcome of the case.  Historically, the only reason to file for divorce before the end of the year would be concerns that one's spouse has some potentially serious tax issues.  However, in 2018 there is at least one very good reason why it might be imperative to file for divorce before 2019.

Divorce and family law are deceptively complicated areas of the law that effect the most important, intimate parts of a person's life and often involve the largest and most uncomfortable financial transactions one will ever face.  If you think you might have to deal with the unfortunate possibility of a divorce in your future, please schedule a consultation with me by contacting my legal assistant, Cathy at (248) 608-4123 or through this web site, I can help you. 


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Friday, May 4, 2018

Fault and Divorce in Michigan: Part Three - Emotional and Verbal Abuse


Fault and Divorce in Michigan 

When handling divorce matters, the issue of fault often comes up.  In Michigan, by law, there are many types of fault that the court may consider when dividing property or awarding alimony.  One form of fault that is unfortunately present in many divorce cases is emotional and verbal abuse.

Emotional and Verbal Abuse

In many cases there are issues surrounding emotional or verbal abuse.  This can be a very serious form of abuse from name calling to constantly berating the other spouse as a means for control.


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Wednesday, July 26, 2017

How is Spousal Support Determined in Michigan?


When going through a divorce, people are usually concerned about the future. Will they be financially ruined by the divorce? Will they have enough means to live on and pay their bills? Will they receive or have to pay alimony? How is spousal support determined in Michigan?

Talking with an experienced Read more . . .


Friday, January 27, 2017

Failure to Report Income Fails in Michigan Child Support Case


In some divorce and post-divorce cases, one spouse or the other will underreport his or her income to the Friend of the Court (FOC)  in an attempt to avoid child support.  If an objection is not filed by one party, this may go unnoticed as the FOC is not really designed to investigate whether or not the documentation provided is full and accurate.  If one party objects then the FOC or the family law court will schedule a hearing and each side will present evidence.

This appears to be the situation in the matter of Thaxton v Thaxton, COA 327545, December 6, 2016 (unpublished), where the FOC recommended originally that the father pay the mother seventy-three ($73) dollars per month based upon tax returns provided by both parties.  The father hired an attorney and filed an objection.


Read more . . .


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