Many married couples experience life changes that lead them to believe their marriage is no longer repairable. When this happens, they may wish to file for divorce. There are many different ways a divorce can be completed. When spouses cannot reach agreements regarding the terms of their marital issues, they may need the assistance of the court to do so. This is known as a contested divorce. In these cases, the court can make decisions for the couple regarding child support, child custody, visitation, the division of assets, spousal support, and more. If you are facing a divorce, it is important to retain the services of an experienced Michigan divorce attorney for assistance with your case.
What is Equitable Distribution?
Spouses who cannot agree on how to divide their assets can allow the court to make these decisions for them. It is important to understand in these situations that marital property may be subject to equitable distribution. This means the assets are not divided equally, but fairly between the spouses. The court considers the following factors to come to this decision:
- The length of the marriage
- The age and health of each spouse
- The contribution to the marital estate of each spouse
- The financial needs and circumstances of each spouse
- The earning ability of each spouse
How are Child Custody and Support Determined?
When children are involved in a divorce, it calls matters of child custody and child support into question. When the court is left to determine custody, it is important to know that they do this with the child’s best interest in mind, not the wants of the parents. When determining child support, Michigan courts use a formula to determine the amount that is owed based on the needs of the child and what parents can provide. This takes the following factors into consideration:
- Both parents’ yearly income
- Both parents’ health
- The child’s age
- If the child has special needs
- The custody terms
- How many children both parents have
- If the child will pursue higher education
How is Spousal Support Determined?
There are many cases in which the court may order spousal support. This may happen if one spouse is dependent on the other for financial stability. In these cases, the independent spouse may be required to make support payments until the dependent spouse can support themselves.
Contact our Firm
Sometimes, divorce, family, and estate matters are difficult to navigate. Fortunately, they do not have to be with the assistance of a compassionate, knowledgeable attorney who is willing to guide you every step of the way. If you need a seasoned firm to help you with any divorce, family or estate-related matter, please do not hesitate to contact Collis & Griffor today to schedule a consultation.