Grand Rapids Divorce Attorney
Family law includes a range of marital and domestic relations issues, many of which can be resolved through negotiation and settlement, while others require aggressive courtroom litigation. Each case is different, but our expertise and legal knowledge are constants.
Achieving Your Goals, Protecting Your Family
Unfortunately, marriages can and do break down. When reconciliation is futile, however, we step in to protect and enforce clients’ rights and address the needs of their families.
On any given day, our Grand Rapids divorce lawyers counsel clients on:
- Divorce planning
- Alternative dispute resolution options such as mediation and collaborative
- Business valuations and what to expect
- Spousal support (alimony)
- Child support
- Child custody
- Parenting time including shared arrangements
As certified family law mediators, our attorneys employ negotiation and dispute resolution processes to seek an amicable resolution of their divorce but if acrimony replaces accord and the parties cannot reach an agreement, we are experienced in the courtroom, and well prepared for litigation in order to obtain the best possible outcome for our client.
Grounds For Divorce in Michigan
Michigan follows a no-fault divorce approach, meaning a divorce can be sought merely by asserting that the marriage has reached an irreparable point. Despite this no-fault framework, a judge may consider fault and a spouse's conduct within the marriage during alimony and property division proceedings.
What Are The Residency Requirements?
Divorce can be complicated and emotional, at McShane & Bowie, we are here to provide clear guidance. If you are thinking about filing for divorce, it is essential to know the requirements before starting the process.
Below are the basic requirements for filing divorce in Michigan:
- You must have lived in Michigan for at least 180 days.
- The divorce process begins in the county's circuit court where either party resided for at least ten days before filing for divorce. People typically file in the county in which they now reside, however, it is not required. You also have the option to file where your spouse lives.
- Physical separation is not required to begin the divorce process.
- If your spouse lives out of state and you want a Michigan divorce, the requirements are:
- You and your spouse must have lived as a married couple in Michigan
- You have been a resident of Michigan for a year before filing for divorce
- Note that if one spouse has never lived in Michigan, the jurisdiction of the court may be limited. This means that the court may be able to divorce you, however, it may not be able to make other decisions in areas that involve division of property.
Navigating Michigan divorce requires a clear and thorough understanding of family laws. At McShane & Bowie. Our experienced Grand Rapids divorce attorneys are ready to guide you through each step, ensuring your journey is well-informed and supported.
Safeguarding Your Assets
The assets obtained during a marriage are critically examined in a divorce action. A divorce can impact:
- Business, corporate, and partnership interests
- Stock options
- Health insurance
- Employee benefits
- Retirement interests
- Deferred compensation and executive perks
Occasionally, there are hidden, premarital, gifted, or inherited assets to be considered. Any depletion of assets is investigated. We review whether it is appropriate to impute income to a spouse, or whether a spouse receives significant financial benefits that do not appear on a tax return. We have extensive experience in locating, valuing, and protecting clients’ interests, and when necessary we collaborate with and seek advice from CPAs, valuation experts, forensic accountants, financial advisors, and wealth managers. Our Grand Rapids divorce lawyers at McShane & Bowie are also available to assist with any tax, estate planning, real estate, and corporate issues that may arise.
We counsel men and women in traditional and non-traditional marriages even before they exchange vows. Even the most loving and trusting individuals want to protect their property, and we prepare prenuptial agreements that clearly identify assets and ownership interests.
Premarital agreements can be particularly important when one or both spouses:
- Currently have sizeable assets
- Anticipate inheriting significant assets
- Own a business or professional practice
- Want to protect specific assets for children from a prior marriage
Our divorce lawyers in Grand Rapids are among the most admired and recognized lawyers in Michigan, with a long list of honors, awards, and accolades. We are recognized leaders in our field who frequently write and speak on divorce-related topics and trends. Lawyers and judges not only trust our skills and talents enough to refer their clients and friends to us, they also call on us to serve as mediators to facilitate results in the family law matters in which they are involved.
"I've been with McShane & Bowie for almost 20 years, and wouldn't consider going elsewhere. The team has taken excellent care of me."Karen S.
"McShane & Bowie is patient, compassionate, super-smart, and well-prepared and chooses cases carefully to make sure they are able to give each client their full attention. Details do not slip past ..."Avvo User
"I highly recommend McShane & Bowie, very impressive knowledge and work ethic."Blake H.
We have the skill & experience needed to protect your rights & vital interests & get the results you need to succeed.
Founded in 1952, we have a longstanding and excellent reputation in the community.
Your lead attorney is with you, every step of the way, working to achieve your desired results while minimizing unnecessary delays and costs.
Each legal challenge is met head-on with specialized knowledge, a tailored plan, and innovative thinking.