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Michigan Divorce Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Michigan on
Q: If a buy a home/cabin with my son and get a divorce, does my wife have any rights to that home/cabin?
Kyle J. Bristow
Kyle J. Bristow answered on Nov 4, 2019

Any asset which is acquired during the marriage with marital funds is a marital asset. Marital assets are subject to division should a divorce occur.

You should immediately and privately consult with a lawyer who practices family law if you are considering filing for divorce.

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Michigan on
Q: My wife and I have live at the same address for 27 years. Both of our names have been on the deed since 2003.

We have been talking about getting a divorce and she maintains that because the property was deeded to her prior to our marriage, I have no rights to it. What are my rights, please?

Thank you.


Neil Colman
Neil Colman answered on Oct 12, 2019

I would have to say that after 27 years of marriage, she's not going to receive the home as her sole and separate property. Whatever you do, I strongly urge you to retain the services of an experienced and knowledgeable family law attorney, especially in light of the comments she's made. Unless it... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Michigan on
Q: How long do you have to be married to qualify for a spouses 401K in a divorce?
Brent T. Geers
Brent T. Geers answered on Oct 9, 2019

There is no time requirement, but when making an equitable division of assets (and debts), we're looking toward what is considered the marital estate - meaning anything acquired or accumulated during the marriage. In the case of a retirement account, what may be relevant is what contributions were... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Michigan on
Q: I’m going through a divorce and I was told about the dowry law in Michigan. My final divorce date is in 3 days.

I was told that if we don’t settle on an agreement I’m not going to get the divorce until we go through trials until we get the Dowry out of the way. I’m just worried is it even guaranteed I’ll even get it? Or even worth the wait? What do you think I should do?

Brent T. Geers
Brent T. Geers answered on Sep 26, 2019

Who is advising you about dowry? He or she may be surprised to know that dowry went away in Michigan back in 2017. Dowry was a 1/3 life estate interest in the husband's real estate. And I'm not sure, really, what implication dowry would have now in a divorce proceeding. The answer to that question... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Michigan on
Q: Will I be mandated to pay alimony after a divorce?

Seriously thinking about getting a divorce and weighing out my options. I live in Michigan and earn about 60-80K more than my spouse in any given year. My children are fully grown and not financial dependents. There is legal written records of adultery on his end as well.

Brent T. Geers
Brent T. Geers answered on Sep 26, 2019

An attorney would need some additional facts to determine your exposure to spousal support. Making that much more than your spouse is not a favorable factor for you, but would need to be weighed against how long you've been married, and evidence of his infidelity.

For all the people worried...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Rights, Constitutional Law, Divorce and Family Law for Michigan on
Q: With no fault divorce thus no crime; how is it that Alimony is awarded since the Michigan Constitution bans slavery.

Given that the state of Michigan does not allow for slavery except in the punishment of a crime and that no fault divorce is not a crime how does the Michigan supreme court fail to rule all Family Court Spousal Support claims and rulings as unconstitutional. Once a union is dissolved continued... Read more »

Brent T. Geers
Brent T. Geers answered on Sep 26, 2019

I see that you are a student of the law; that's good.

By your logic, shouldn't wage garnishments in general be abolished? And in fact civil litigation between private individuals should be unconstitutional, no? After all, how is that you should be able to sue me and take my money just...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Michigan on
Q: Can a judge order me to move closer to my kids?

I live a hour and a half away from my kids and soon to be ex. I want to move from my temporary place to a year lease apt. My work is closer where I am at. I have ever other weekend visitations.

Brent T. Geers
Brent T. Geers answered on Sep 26, 2019

A judge cannot order you to move closer. However, the amount of parenting time you are awarded will be determined based on the child's best interest, and it will almost assuredly not be in their best interest to travel frequently that far. But if you are fine with every other weekend visitation,... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Michigan on
Q: Do I have to declare I have had legal advise from a lawyer if my spouse and I are starting the divorce process?
Brent T. Geers
Brent T. Geers answered on Sep 10, 2019

Not necessarily. But if your attorney drafts anything, Michigan's Rules of Professional Conduction requires the attorney to include a notation that it was drafted by an attorney.

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce, Family Law and Child Custody for Michigan on
Q: I have left my wife and we have a 2 1/2 year old daughter. my soon to be EX is keeping our daughter from me. What can I

do to be able to see my daughter before anything is filed

Kenneth V Zichi
Kenneth V Zichi answered on Jul 25, 2019

To answer the specific question, 'make your ex talk with you to consent to something'. In other words there is nothing YOU can do before filing. It takes consent of both you and your ex.

Hire an attorney to represent you and either file a complaint for divorce or answer the complaint your...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce, Domestic Violence and Family Law for Michigan on
Q: Where does a mother of 3 go to seek financial help with a divorce in Ionia County, MI? Husband has been abusive, also.

Income is under $30k. I have been trying to help my friend to get a divorce as the situation is not good but she struggles financially. Everyone wants $3-6k down to start a divorce and she does not have the means to do so.

Brent T. Geers
Brent T. Geers answered on Jun 18, 2019

Contact your local Legal Aid office. Certainly, her income will be a factor to qualify, but domestic violence is also a consideration for help. Otherwise, you may call the local bar association or the state bar association.

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Michigan on
Q: Do I file a divorce with minor kids or without minor kids?

My ex and I have a almost 1 year old but he is currently placed with my parents under a guardianship. Since we don’t have him do I file a divorce with minor children or without minor children?

Brent T. Geers
Brent T. Geers answered on Jun 12, 2019

Good question, but I believe you'll need to file divorce with minor children. A guardianship is not the same as having had your parental rights terminated.

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce and Family Law for Michigan on
Q: My husband's biological kids are in foster care currently, placed with his mother. Can a judge force me out of our home?

I am not the children's biological mother (deseased) but I have been raising them as a stay at home mom for the since they were 2 and they are now 7. My husband and I both relapsed in our addiction and they children were removed. He has stayed sober and I relapsed 3 months ago. I went into long... Read more »

Brent T. Geers
Brent T. Geers answered on May 15, 2019

These situations are always messy and complex. I assume that you are legally married. You do have rights as the spouse, including the right to remain living in the marital home. HOWEVER, your husband is at risk of having his parental rights terminated. Whether the basis for that action is your... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Michigan on
Q: My ex husband announced his girlfriend is 5 months pregant right After divorce final

Is there anything i can do

Brent T. Geers
Brent T. Geers answered on May 6, 2019

Probably not. Michigan is a no-fault state.

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce, Family Law and Child Custody for Michigan on
Q: How difficult is it to petition the court to move out of state with my 16 year old?

Child has the opportunity for a full college tuition scholarship if she is a full time resident for 12 months. Dad is barely involved since the divorce 2 yrs ago and only sees her maybe once a month. I expect a fight on my hands.

Laurie Schmitt
Laurie Schmitt answered on Apr 30, 2019


Are you contemplating moving out of town or out of state with your child? Will this move be more than 100 miles from the child's current legal residence? Has the court awarded you joint legal custody or sole legal custody?

Before you decide...
Read more »

3 Answers | Asked in Bankruptcy and Divorce for Michigan on
Q: Bankruptcy and Divorce?

My wife and I are planning to divorce. The problem is that neither of us can afford to live alone and our debts are so intertwined between us (both names on everything) that splitting it would be impossible. We're considering a bankruptcy to simplify the process. I believe we make too much to... Read more »

Thomas. R. Morris
Thomas. R. Morris answered on Apr 24, 2019

Their may be an advantage to filing before a divorce, but your situation is too complicated and/or the facts too sparse for an attorney to advise you in an on-line discussion so I don't want to go into detail. You should consult with an attorney who handles bankruptcies.

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2 Answers | Asked in Consumer Law, Divorce and Real Estate Law for Michigan on
Q: Ex wife did not refinance loan for house from divorce and mortgage just increased $10,000 w/o my sig. Is this legal

Ex-wife won the house and all debt associated in the divorce but there wasn't a timeline to refinance written in the agreement. I know she has been able to defer payments/remodify without my signature but this last Jan/Feb the loan balance increased by $10,000 and she bought a brand new camper.... Read more »

Trent Harris
Trent Harris answered on Apr 22, 2019

The divorce decree is binding between you and your ex-spouse, and isn’t binding on the mortgage company. So they have the right to continue reporting the loan as yours, until it’s paid in full. That’s the first part.

But the second part is whether the loan documents you signed...
Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Divorce and Child Custody for Michigan on
Q: My sister husband was cheating on my sister for over a month. Will he be sentenced for what he did?

It was a prostitute he would pay to have sex with her while my sister was at work and her kids at school and while my brother was at work.

Brent T. Geers
Brent T. Geers answered on Apr 17, 2019

Sentenced as in a criminal case? Not unless he was caught and charged with soliciting a prostitute or something like that. The police and prosecutors do not charge people criminally for cheating.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Child Support and Divorce for Michigan on
Q: Divorced 1 yr, joint custody, I pay CS. Ex's pay has increased and we now have same salary. Can I request CS mod in MI?

My ex wife and I share 50/50 custody, however I pay child support because I was making more than her at the time of our divorce. We have been divorced one year. Is it too early to request a review for a child support modification? I reside in Michigan

Brent T. Geers
Brent T. Geers answered on Apr 8, 2019

The threshold for a modification is whether any change of circumstance would change the support amount by more than $50 or 10%. The state offers a free online child support calculator that you can input your numbers to see if you would meet the criteria.

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Michigan on
Q: Wife moved out. How long do I have to wait to move girlfriend in with kids involved?
Brent T. Geers
Brent T. Geers answered on Apr 1, 2019

The long and short answer depends on how contentious your and your wife make this divorce. If she protests, you could find yourself with a court order telling you not to introduce any romantic third parties to the children, and certainly not move the girlfriend in.

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation, Contracts and Divorce for Michigan on
Q: Can a finance company come after me for auto loan when divorce decree States ex is solely responsible?

During pre-trial today finance companies attorney told me divorce decree is not legally binding. Also stated they already received judgement from EX on the auto loan.

Brent T. Geers
Brent T. Geers answered on Mar 5, 2019

That attorney is correct. Your judgment of divorce has no bearing on the contract you and possibly your ex signed once upon a time. But under the terms of your judgment of divorce, it sounds like you'd have a fair claim for what's called indemnity against your ex (e.g. paying someone else's debt)... Read more »

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