What to Do After Being Served With Divorce Papers in Michigan
Being served with divorce papers can turn your world upside down, even if you’ve been separated from your spouse and a divorce is not entirely unexpected. The heightened emotions of this stressful situation can cause you to act in ways that only serve to further complicate the proceedings and that are not in your best interest in the long run.
You need to be especially careful if children are involved and you intend to seek some measure of custody. What should you do after being served with divorce papers in Michigan? Here are a few steps you’ll want to take.
Do NOT Contact Your Spouse
No good can come from contacting your spouse immediately after receiving divorce papers. Any contact will likely result in an altercation that could damage any hopes you might have for an amicable resolution, or even for reconciliation. Give yourself time to consider your options and how best to proceed instead of lashing out in your heightened emotional state.
Speak to an Attorney
When you are served with divorce papers, the very first thing you should do is contact a qualified attorney. This experienced professional can guide you through what to expect, advise you on how to proceed, and provide the legal support you need to ensure the best possible outcome in this difficult situation.
Your attorney will help you to gather needed paperwork, meet applicable filing deadlines, and make preparations for mediation, and possibly trial. Your lawyer will handle the discovery process and take steps to ensure a fair and equitable settlement, as well as appropriate spousal support, child custody, and child support if necessary.
Get Your Paperwork in Order
The divorce process entails separation of assets and debts, or division of marital property. This means you and your spouse have to disclose financial information and come to a fair and equitable agreement for splitting financial concerns. If you fail to provide needed information, it could be discovered later on, leading to penalties, so it’s always best to be forthcoming and make sure you have all your ducks in a row.
Note Important Deadlines
The courts take a dim view of missing deadlines, and you could suffer consequences for failing to file appropriate paperwork in a timely manner. In other words, it’s up to you to make sure you’re aware of pertinent deadlines where your divorce proceedings are concerned. For example, once you are served with divorce papers, you have only 21 days to file answer in Michigan.
Consider How Your Actions Will Affect Your Kids
You and your ex-spouse will be naturally distraught over the deterioration of your relationship. There may be feelings of anger, resentment, and hurt on both sides. However, you need to remember that your children are also dealing with emotional turmoil as a result of the divorce, and it’s your responsibility to support them through this tough time, and not to burden them further.
It can be hard to think rationally after you receive divorce papers, but with the assistance of a qualified lawyer you can get through it. Contact the expert attorneys at The Gucciardo Law Firm today at 248-723-5190.
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