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the needs of the parties

Award of alimony 37 years after divorce overturned

Approximately 37 years ago, the Gallagher’s divorced after 22 years of marriage. The Judgment of Divorce provided that alimony for the wife was “reserved”.  37 years after the divorce, Ms. Gallagher petitioned the trial court for an award of alimony. Remarkably, the trial court granted the request and ordered the former husband to pay $2,500.00[…]

Divorce Alternatives

How to get relief from a Judgment of Divorce.

Once a Michigan Judgment of Divorce is entered most people think that things are final and they are right. The limited exception to this rule applies to custody, parenting time and support which can change when there is a change of circumstances.  However, there are certain limited circumstances when you can request a court to[…]

settlement agreement

Can you change your mind after settlement?

You successfully settled your divorce case when you wake up the next morning with regret, buyer’s remorse, or simply that sinking feeling experienced about what you just did. Can you change your mind after settlement? The first step in the analysis is determining if your settlement is in fact a contract. Was there an offer[…]

Jake Cunningham

The “new” Judges of Oakland County Divorce Court

With the midterm elections now over, we welcome two newly elected Oakland County judges. Traditionally, newly elected Oakland County judges serve on the Family Court. Family Court includes cases involving divorce, child custody, parenting time, child support and spousal support (alimony). The two newly elected Oakland County judges are Julie McDonald and Jake Cunningham.  […]

Alimony

How is spousal support calculated?

How is spousal support calculated?  Spousal support is when one spouse pays money (also called alimony) to another spouse for a term of months or years after divorce. The general rule is that a spouse may need spousal support if he/she is substantially dependent on the income of the other spouse for the regular necessities of[…]

Discovery

The use of a Discovery deposition at trial

Discovery is the formal process by which you “discover” information relevant to the case. In a Michigan divorce, custody or family law case, discovery is conducted in three ways.  First, Interrogatories (think Interrogate) which are written questions which must be answered under oath and subject to the felony of perjury.  Second, a Subpoena, which is[…]

alimony in Michigan

What is alimony in Michigan? (BTW it is the same as spousal support).

The purpose of alimony in Michigan is to balance the unfair economic effects of a divorce. Simply put alimony (which is the same as spousal support) is paid by one party to financially support a spouse after divorce if the property award is insufficient to support either party. This video webinar examines alimony in Michigan[…]

Child Support

How to have your spouse pay your attorney fees?

Can you have your spouse pay your attorney fees for a divorce or other family law case?  The answer is yes! When someone starts to think about divorce, one of the first questions they have is how much is it going to cost? The cost of a divorce varies with the complexity of the case[…]

tax reform and divorce

Tax reform and divorce. It could radically change Michigan Divorce!

Senate and House republicans recently reached an agreement on the final tax bill which was signed by President Trump today. The impact of tax reform and divorce law may be significant. The tax reform law goes into effect on January 2018.  However, as everyone knows we file taxes in April for the prior tax year[…]

Michigan Alimony and spousal support – The nitty gritty details

It is easy to get lost in the trees when you should be focusing on the forest.  However, we recognize that some people like the nitty gritty details which is why we created the nitty gritty details series.  The nitty gritty details series will focus on the technical side of Michigan divorce, custody and support[…]

Rancilo

The Judges of Macomb County Divorce Court

Macomb County Circuit Court – Family Division:  At Findling Law, we have the great privilege of appearing before divorce courts throughout the state of Michigan.  One of these courts is the Macomb County Circuit Court.   The Macomb County Circuit Court – Family Division is simply known as the Macomb County Divorce Court. The Macomb[…]

Credibility

A divorce case of credibility.

On July 20, 2017, in the case of Guiles v. Guiles, the Michigan Court of Appeals issued an opinion affirming a trial court ruling awarding the wife $3,000.00 in spousal support for 10 years.  The Guiles case was a case of credibility.  The trial court determined that the wife was more believable than the husband[…]

role of fault

The role of fault – “He hit me and gave me a bloody nose.”

It just happens that one of the most common questions asked is the role of fault in a Michigan divorce and on July 18, 2017, the Michigan Court of Appeals addressed the issue in the case of Koch v. Koch.  The Koch marriage began in 1987 and ended October 17, 2014.  The parties had one[…]

the needs of the parties

Alimony in Michigan – The needs of the parties.

Alimony and spousal support are payments made to support a former spouse.  Most attorneys use guidelines to estimate an alimony payment.  However, Michigan alimony law allows for an evaluation of the needs of the parties in determining alimony or spousal support, something that alimony guidelines don’t do. The most popular alimony guidelines take into consideration[…]

When is a deal a deal?

When is a deal a deal?  Settlements. I was recently approached by the editors of the Michigan Family Law Journal to write a monthly column on Michigan Divorce and Family Law.  The Michigan Family Law Journal is a publication of the State Bar of Michigan Family Law Section and serves as “Family Law Council’s forum to[…]

Oakland County divorce help

Where to find divorce help in Oakland County

This article on where to find divorce help in Oakland County was inspired by the Oakland County Friend of the Court handout with the same title and I felt sharing it worth sharing with our audience. Divorce help in Oakland County at Findling Law While I recognize I may be stating the obvious, you can[…]

Considering divorce

6 Things to Know When Considering Divorce

Making the choice to divorce is a big deal. A really big deal.  You won’t be making this decision on a whim, nor should you make it without empowering yourself with information. Here are 6 things you need to know when considering divorce.       Know when to see a lawyer. A divorce is[…]

Changes at the Oakland County divorce court

The Oakland County divorce court is changing.  Mandatory retirement, judicial appointments and elections in November will result in even more changes at Oakland County divorce court.  The Oakland County divorce court is made up of Judges from both circuit court and probate court.  These judges specialize in hearing family law cases such as divorce, custody,[…]

Divorce Arbitration

Arbitration and Michigan Divorce

In a Michigan divorce, the parties can agree to arbitration instead of trial. Arbitration is a form of alternative dispute resolution which is also referred to as ADR.  Arbitration is similar to mediation except the arbitrator can make a binding decision if the parties cannot agree on an issue. When parties mediate a divorce case,[…]

How to hide assets in a divorce case.

Why hide assets in a divorce case?   The answer is simple, to prevent sharing the assets with your spouse.   WARNING:  Do not hide assets in a divorce case!  –  “Don’t do the crime, if you can’t do the time” – Baretta.  Hiding assets in a divorce case may be illegal and the consequences will[…]

Can you sue a Judge in Michigan?

Can you sue a Judge in Michigan?  Let’s face it, sometimes Judges get things wrong.  When they do, one option is to take an appeal, but can you sue a Judge in Michigan? The Michigan Court of Appeals is an intermediate higher court and can overturn a lower court’s decision when it makes an error[…]

Contempt of Court

Show Cause Hearing

Ever wonder how a court enforce’s its orders?  One answer is a show cause hearing.  A show cause hearing asks the question:  “Why shouldn’t the court hold you in contempt of court for violation of the court’s order?”   At a show cause hearing, the burden is placed on the person suspected of violating a[…]

Settlement Agreement

Confidential Settlement Agreements

Divorce can be a public event but it does not have to be.  A divorce ends a marriage.  Unfortunately, for a private individual a divorce  can evolve into a public affair drenched in gossip.  Judgment of Divorce When a divorce is granted the judge signs a document called a Judgment of Divorce which is the[…]

Business value and divorce

The value of a business in divorce – part 2

In the  first part of this two part series on determining the value of a business in divorce we examined four definitions of value in a divorce.  The four definitions are Fair Market Value, Fair Value and Investment Value and Holders Interest Value. It does not matter if the business was started during the course[…]