How long does it take to complete a divorce in Michigan?
The intent of marriage is rooted in hope and love and promise of a life together, sharing the rewards and challenges of a relationship and unforgettable moments. If a couple welcomes children into their lives, that brings commitment and learning and incomparable feelings of happiness.
However, as with many things made of good intentions, some marriages falter and couples eventually make the decision to split up. In fact, about half of all married couples in the U.S. choose to divorce. The emotional duress involved is stressful enough but divorce also commands a great deal of time and accounting of many complex details. Two married people can’t simply part ways and carry on without a care in the world; the components of the union must be addressed specifically to the situation. While many issues impact the duration of divorce proceedings, Michigan law maintains a semblance of common time frames.
Michigan is a no-fault divorce state and it is not necessary for a couple to legally separate prior to filing for divorce. However, several standard time requirements have an impact on the length of time involved. For example, couples without children should plan on a minimum of 60 days to see divorce proceedings all the way through, although two to nine months is common. When children are present, expect roughly six to twelve months to reach the final stages of divorce.
The divorce “clock” starts as soon as one spouse formally files the required papers and specific scenarios have an effect on the time the process will take. One detail is residency status, whether children are part of the family or not. In Michigan, one spouse or the other must show proof of residency for at least six months before filing divorce papers. Residency requirements drop to just 10 days in the county of residence if children are not involved.
The timing required for various divorce procedures is also critical elements in determining the ultimate time to finalization. One of these scenarios relates to the time of filing. As soon as one member of the couple files for divorce, the other party must be formally served, after which they have 21 days to reply in writing to the notification.
Settlement of issues ahead of time is of course always best on all levels, from emotional stability to children’s wellbeing to expense. A couple reaching agreement early in the process can forward results to the court for a thorough review and if everything is in order, the divorce can be finalized immediately after the 60-day interim.
Getting along makes a difference
Sometimes it’s not so easy but simply getting along and cooperating is a great help in moving the divorce process quickly to its final steps. Common issues such as spousal support and child custody can eat up a lot of time but handling the matters in civil and productive ways makes all the difference.
For more information on divorce planning in Michigan, contact The Gucciardo Law Firm today at (248) 723-5190.
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