Tuesday, September 19, 2006

#7 Understanding the Divorce Process.

By Attorney Terry Ray Bankert 810 235-1970
Divorce, Custody, Child Support, Alimony, Child Neglect, Flint Michigan USA Lawyer. http://terrybankert.blogspot.com/
Do you need help now? Call 810 235-1970 !

Date 9/15/06
Where to File for Divorce

State courts have power (or "jurisdiction") over divorce proceedings, here it will be the Genesee County Circuit Court , so the spouse seeking a divorce files an initial document called a divorce "complaint". Michigan has a specific family court division where the divorce petition is filed and the case is heard.http://www.lasuperiorcourt.org/locations/

Do I have to live in a state to get a divorce there?

All states require a spouse to be a resident of the state -- often for at least six months , Michigan, and sometimes for as long as one year -- before filing for a divorce there. Someone who files for divorce must offer proof that he or she has resided there for the required length of time. Only three states -- Alaska, South Dakota and Washington -- have no statutory requirement for resident status.

If you think that your spouse will file for divorce in another state, it may be prudent to spend the money up front and file first -- in your home state. Rarely is a divorce settled in one court appearance, and if your spouse files elsewhere you could rack up a lot of traveling expenses. Also, any modifications to the divorce decree, including the property settlement agreement and arrangements for child custody and support , must be filed in the original state. This could keep you traveling out of state for years to come, especially if you have children with your spouse.
Can one spouse move to a different state or country to get a divorce?

If one spouse meets the residency requirement of a state or country, a divorce obtained there is valid, even if the other spouse lives somewhere else. The courts of all states will recognize the divorce.

If you receive documents from a foreign country, you may want to consult an attorney to advise you of whether your state court or the foreign court governs the issues. This depends on many factors, such as which particular country is involved, where the parties lived and for how long and, of course, whether children are involved.

Filing and Serving the Divorce/Dissolution Petition

The divorce/dissolution Complaint is a legal document that is filed in court by a spouse who seeks a divorce. Also called the "petition" in some states, the complaint informs the court of the filing spouse's desire to end the marriage, and its filing with the court signifies the initiation of the divorce process. Once the divorce/dissolution petition has been "served" on the petitioner's spouse, it also notifies him or her that the divorce process has begun (more on serving the petition below).

Contents of the Divorce Complaint: Information and Requests

While specific requirements and formats vary from state to state, the divorce/dissolution petition typically contains the following information:
Identification of the spouses by name and address;
Date and place of marriage;
Identification of children of the marriage;
Acknowledgement that the petitioner and/or his or her spouse have lived in the state or county for a certain amount of time prior to filing the petition;
Grounds for divorce; There has been a breakdown in the Marital relationship and the bonds of matrimony have been broken. Specific fault does not have to be stated.
Declaration or request as to how the petitioner would like to settle finances, property division, child custody, visitation, and other issues related to divorce.

Contents of the Divorce/Dissolution Petition: Temporary Orders

In addition to the information described above, the divorce complaint may ask the court to put temporary "orders" in place on certain family and financial issues while the divorce process is ongoing. If approved, these orders usually stay in effect until the divorce becomes final. These temporary orders may pertain to issues such as:
Which spouse will have primary (physical) custody of the child(ren);
Child visitation schedule for the non-custodial spouse;
Payment of child support;
Payment of spousal support;
Which spouse will live in the couple's house or primary residence;
Payment of bills and other financial concerns
By Attorney Terry Ray Bankert 810 235-1970
Divorce, Custody, Child Support, Alimony, Child Neglect, Flint Michigan USA Lawyer. http://terrybankert.blogspot.com/Do you need help now?
Call 810 235-1970 !

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