What to do Before Filing for Divorce in Michigan

If you are contemplating divorce, you may be wondering what to do before filing for divorce in Michigan. If you're not sure what steps to take before filing, rest assured, our team of Dearborn divorce attorneys are here to guide you every step of the way. We will guide you through key considerations and actions to keep in mind before initiating the divorce process in Michigan.

At Clarity Family Law we provide uncompromising representation and we are available to assist you throughout the divorce process. Our Dearborn family law attorneys will ensure that your legal rights are protected and your desired outcomes are achieved. Contact us today at (313) 513-1919 for a free consultation.

Steps to Take Before Filing for Divorce in Michigan

1. Speak with a lawyer: It is important to speak with a Dearborn divorce lawyer before filing your divorce papers in Michigan as they can provide legal advice and help you understand the laws that may affect your case. A lawyer can also explain the process of filing for divorce, the filing fees, and mandatory waiting periods and guide how to best navigate the divorce law process.

2. Gather important documents: Before filing for divorce, it is important to gather the documents needed to begin the process. This includes bank statements, tax returns, mortgage or lease agreements on marital property and separate property, insurance policies, health insurance payments, residency requirements, and pay stubs. These legal documents may be needed during the divorce process, so it is essential to have them on hand.

3. Make financial arrangements: It is important to make financial arrangements before filing for divorce. This includes making changes to bank accounts, splitting up assets, division of property, and determining who will be responsible for debts. It is also important to create a budget to ensure both parties have sufficient funds during and after the divorce procedures process.

4. Consider your children: If you have minor children, it is important to consider their needs before filing for divorce. This includes creating an amicable divorce agreement on joint custody or custody arrangements, that outlines parenting time, child support, separate maintenance, and other important decisions that may be needed.

5. Consider mediation: Mediation is a great way to resolve disputes without having to go through the court system. It can help couples agree on issues such as property division, child custody, equitable distribution of assets, and other matters related to legal separations.

Filing for divorce in Michigan can be a difficult process. However, with the right preparation and guidance, it is possible to navigate the process successfully. Making sure to speak with a lawyer, gather important documents, make financial arrangements, consider your children’s needs, and consider mediation are all important steps to take before filing for divorce in Michigan. Contact Clarity Family Law firm divorce attorneys today for legal advice and support through your divorce proceedings. 

Irritated man and woman during a discussion with a divorce attorney

Hiring a Competent Attorney

When considering filing a divorce petition in Michigan, one of the most important steps is to hire a competent attorney. An experienced lawyer can provide invaluable guidance and legal advice throughout the divorce process. When selecting an attorney, it’s important to find someone who is experienced in family law and has experience with divorces in Michigan.

The attorney will be responsible for helping you understand your rights as well as the laws in Michigan that pertain to divorce. They can also assist with negotiations, filing paperwork, and other aspects of the divorce process. An experienced attorney is an invaluable asset during the divorce process.

Understanding Your Financial Standing

If you are considering filing for divorce in Michigan, it is important to understand your financial standing before proceeding. This includes knowing the full scope of your assets and liabilities, as well as having a clear understanding of your estimated income and expenses.

This information will help guide decisions made during the process, such as how to divide marital assets or whether or not one party should provide spousal support.

Learn More : Uncontested Vs. Contested Divorce In Michigan

Compiling Financial Documents

Before filing for divorce in Michigan, gather financial documents. These include records of income, property, debts, assets, and investments. Financial documents can be tax returns, pay stubs, bank statements, investment accounts, loan documents, retirement plans, credit card statements, and other relevant documents.

Keep track of major purchases made during the marriage, like a house or car. Having these documents ready ensures a smooth process and fair distribution. It also reduces conflict and stress during divorce.

Determining Custody Objectives

Determining custody objectives is crucial when considering divorce in Michigan. It is important to have a clear idea of what each party wants and to consider the best interests of the children and other relevant factors.

Consulting with a legal professional can help determine appropriate custody objectives. A lawyer can provide advice and assistance throughout the legal process.

Assess All Joint Financial Accounts

When considering divorce in Michigan, it's crucial to assess all joint financial accounts. Reviewing bank, credit card, and investment accounts before filing can help you understand how assets will be divided. Closing joint accounts with both names can prevent disputes during the divorce process. These steps are important to consider before filing for divorce in Michigan.

Form Credit in Your Name

Before filing for divorce in Michigan, it is important to establish credit in your name. This can be done by opening a bank account, obtaining a credit card, or applying for a loan.

All of these steps will help you build your own financial identity and credit score. Having your credit will make it easier to manage your finances and get back on your feet financially after the divorce. Additionally, it can help you prove your financial independence in court.

Work Out Your Living Situation

If you are considering divorce in Michigan, it is important to first work out your living situation. This includes understanding who will stay in the house while the divorce process is underway. You may want to consider moving out of the house if it is not possible for you and your spouse to both stay there during the proceedings. Additionally, you should make sure that any assets or valuables are safely stored so that they are not lost or damaged during the divorce process.

It is also important to have a clear idea of your financial situation and how it will be affected by the divorce. Working with an experienced family law attorney can help you understand what assets you are entitled to and what resources may be available to you. 

Establish Your Post-Divorce Budget

When filing for divorce in Michigan, it is important to establish a postdivorce budget. This will help you determine how much money you will need to support yourself financially after the divorce is finalized. You should take into account your income, expenses, debts, assets, and any applicable child support or spousal support payments.

Start by analyzing your current financial situation. Create a budget that includes your expected income and expenses after the divorce is finalized. This will help you understand how much money you may need to save or borrow to cover your living expenses.

Avoid Living Like You Are Single

If you are planning to file a divorce complaint in Michigan, it is important to avoid living like you are single before actually filing. This means avoiding large purchases, such as a new car or home (or even large furniture items), and refraining from becoming involved in any romantic relationships during the separation period.

Making changes to your lifestyle or financial situation can impact the overall outcome of your divorce settlement, so it is important to talk to your attorney before making any decisions.

Alter Your Will

Before filing for a divorce in Michigan, it is important to alter your will. This step helps ensure that after the divorce is finalized, any assets you have will be distributed according to your wishes. It also ensures that any debts you may have accrued during the marriage are properly divided between both parties.

When altering your will, make sure to specify which assets you wish to be given to who. Additionally, you should make sure that any beneficiaries are updated accordingly. 

Maintain Peace Throughout the Proceedings

When filing a grounds for divorce procedure in Michigan, it is important to maintain a sense of peace throughout the proceedings. This can be difficult in a contested divorce and much easier in an uncontested divorce, but there are steps taken by both parties that can help facilitate this process.

One party should always strive to remain civil and respectful during interactions regarding the divorce. This includes conversations between the parties as well as any communication that takes place in court hearings or mediation sessions. Additionally, it is important, to be honest and transparent about any assets or debts you may have to ensure that the process goes smoothly.

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Call Our Dearborn Divorce Lawyers For a Free Consultation Before Filing for Divorce in Michigan!

If you’re considering filing for divorce in Michigan, it is important to seek the legal counsel of an experienced Dearborn divorce lawyer. At Clarity Family Law, we provide our clients with dedicated and compassionate representation throughout their divorces. We will work tirelessly to ensure that your rights and interests are protected every step of the way.

Before filing for divorce in Michigan, several steps should be taken to ensure a successful outcome. These include creating a postdivorce budget, avoiding living like you are single, altering your will, and striving to maintain peace throughout the proceedings.

Clarity Family Law is available to provide legal assistance throughout the entire process of filing for divorce in Michigan. Contact us today online for a free consultation or call us at (313) 513-1919.

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