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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[…]

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[…]

joint legal custody

Michigan mom facing jail time for not vaccinating her son.

In a recent report by ABC news, Rebecca Bredow indicated that she would “absolutely” rather go to jail than vaccinate her son.  Her former husband, on the other hand wants to follow a regular vaccination schedule and she is refusing to do so. The American Academy of Pediatrics consider vaccinations safe, effective and the most[…]

Change custody in Michigan

How to change custody in Michigan? The checklist

Figuring out how to change custody in Michigan can be complicated.  To make things less complicated, we created the “How to change custody in Michigan checklist” to help you navigate the process. How to change custody in Michigan – The checklist. Watch the “How to change custody in Michigan” video; You cannot just show up[…]

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[…]

Parallel Parenting

Parallel Parenting: When You Just Can’t Co-Anything Anymore

You’ve probably heard of co-parenting, a term used to describe the situation in which a child’s parents are no longer married or living together. These parents are no longer together as a couple, but they work together to parent the child. But, what happens when the conflict between the parents is really high? They really[…]

Parenting Guilt

Feel Like a Parenting Failure After Divorce? Parenting guilt? You’re Not Alone

It’s called parenting guilt, and all parents feel it at one time or another. In fact, the best of parents in the most secure relationships with excellent financial and emotional security can feel it. So, if you’re in the process of divorce or are newly divorced, it’s not unusual to feel like a parenting failure.[…]

Michigan custody modification

Michigan custody modification

The Brady Bunch got it right when they sang the once well-known verse of their hit single: “When it’s time to change, you’ve got to rearrange.”  However, in custody cases, change does not always come easy. In fact, Michigan custody modification law makes it difficult to “rearrange” custody if the change is really big.  By[…]

Holiday parenting time

6 Tips for Surviving the Holiday Custody Schedule

Resolving your holiday visitation and custody schedule is yet another element of separation and divorce that needs to be settled, and survived. In a recent article, we explained how holiday visitation is resolved in Michigan. The holiday custody schedule might end up being very different from what you were expecting. How can you cope when[…]

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[…]

Holiday parenting time

All I want for Christmas is holiday visitation

The Christmas (Hanukkah, Kwannzaa . . .) holidays give plenty of reasons to be stressed out.  Add a holiday visitation dispute to the season and the stress level can reach epic proportions. Holiday visitation in Michigan is governed by Michigan Compiled Laws section 722.27a which provides that visitation shall be granted in accordance with the[…]

Co-parenting

Creating a Co-Parenting Plan

Co-Parenting Plan One of the biggest challenges in a divorce is the determination of how time with the child (or children, as the case may be) will be split between the parents. A written document outlining how the parents will raise the child after divorce (and, sometimes, after separation), is called a co-parenting plan, visitation,[…]

Kids and divorce

When the Kids Don’t Get Along

Everyday life with kids can be tricky, no matter what age they are. Sometimes, kids don’t get along, and some may seem to get along rarely, if ever. This can take a toll on the rest of the family, especially when a major life change is occurring, like a divorce. When the kids just seem[…]

Nesting divorce

Nesting – New Age Parenting After Divorce

When you’re going through a divorce, there is a lot to think about. When children are involved, they can be one of the biggest sources of both comfort and worry during this major life change. Whether you get along with your spouse or not, it can be very tricky to figure out the best living[…]

dog and divorce

My dog and divorce. (ok. cats too)

When I got married, my wife had a cat.  I love my wife but I don’t like cats.  Now we have a dog and ironically, the dog has bonded with my wife.  For many, issues relating to a dog and divorce (note – when I say dog, the same rules also apply to cats, horses, ferrets,[…]

Deciding to Stay Together or Divorce: Effects on Kids

We talk about the mechanics and strategies of divorce a lot in our blog, as you would expect.  But, it’s important to also take a wider look at the effects on kids that your divorce – or decision not to divorce- may have. Staying Together may have negative effects on kids You may have been[…]

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Michigan Custody update: Snyder signs the Rape Survivor Custody Act

The Rape Survivor Custody Act protects woman who become impregnated by a rapist. Governor Snyder singed the Rape Survivor Custody Act set forth in Michigan Senate bill 858 and Michigan House bill 4481 were reconciled and signed into law by Governor Snyder on May 3, 2016. Widely lauded by conservative right to life groups who[…]

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 with children

Some thoughts on divorce with children

Some thoughts on divorce with children This letter is written from the perspective of an experienced divorce and family lawyer and not an expert opinion of a mental health professional.  A mental health professional may agree or disagree with this letter.  If you are considering divorce, have been divorced or are going through a divorce[…]

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,[…]

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[…]

Best Interest Factors

Michigan child custody law – the statutes

Michigan child custody law – the statutes. In this article we examine the most commonly cited statutes relating to Michigan child custody law. Sources of Michigan child custody law Michigan child custody law comes from four sources, statutes, precedent, court rules and English common law.  When the legislature passes a Michigan child custody law, the[…]

joint custody

Child custody appeal – What you can do if the court got it wrong.

Sometimes things do not go as planned. Parents typically celebrate after a child is born.  Unfortunately, many relationships end, and if parents cannot agree on custody or parenting time of a child, the Michigan divorce or custody court will decide how custody is awarded and parenting time is spent.  When a court makes the wrong[…]

Why is the established custodial environment so important in Michigan child custody cases?

The established custodial environment. Under Michigan child custody law, the established custodial environment is the parent a child naturally looks to for guidance, discipline, the necessities of life, and parental comfort.  The law defining the established custodial environment is Michigan Compiled Laws, section 722.27. Why is the established custodial environment so important? The established custodial environment is important[…]

Best interest of the child factor (i) – “I want to live with . . .”

Best interest of the child factor (i)  –  “I want to live with . . .” Best interest of the child factor (i) examines if it is ever appropriate for a child to decide who to live with?   Frankly, the short answer is no.  A child is not a parent.  A child is a child and[…]

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