Almost everybody has a story about divorce, whether it is their own divorce experience or that of a friend or family member. While sharing these narratives can help some people through the divorce process, the continuous imparting of experiential knowledge of divorce in Michigan can result in myths about divorce being passed off as truth. We want to discuss some of the most common divorce myths and dispel them so that you can have a better understanding of what the legal process actually looks like. We have collated some articles on divorce myths from Divorce Magazine and the Huffington Post as a starting point.
Here are some divorce myths, along with explanations of why these are in fact myths that do not have any bearing on the actual facts of a divorce case.
1. One of the Spouses is at Fault for the Divorce
Michigan is what is known as a “no-fault” divorce state. This means that, in order to have grounds for divorce and to have your marriage dissolved in Michigan, you do not need to have any evidence that suggests one of the spouses is at fault for the divorce. Instead, as Michigan law (MCL 552.6) explains, the person filing for divorce only needs to allege that there has been a breakdown of the marital relationship and there is no chance that the union can be salvaged.
2. Divorce Takes a Very Long Time
Depending upon the facts of your case, a divorce can be over relatively quickly, or it can take a longer period of time. Typically, an uncontested divorce (in which the couple agrees on all terms) can proceed quickly, while an uncontested divorce (in which the couple can not come to an agreement on all terms) typically takes longer.
3. You Need to File for Divorce in the Same State Where You Got Married
You do not need to file for divorce in the same state where you got married. You can file for divorce in Michigan as long as you or your spouse has resided in the state for at least 180 days (approximately six months).
4. Children Get to Decide Where They Want to Live
While older children can play a role in the court’s decision concerning parenting time, custody decisions are made on the basis of the “best interests of the child” standard under Michigan law. Child preference may be a factor, but certainly is not the sole factor.
5. Equitable Distribution Means Assets Will be Divided Equally
During property division in a Michigan divorce, assets and debts are divided according to a theory of equitable distribution. Yet equitable does not mean equal. Instead, equitable distribution means that marital property is divided in a way that the court decides is fair, or equitable, to both parties.
Contact a Divorce Attorney in Michigan
Do not let others provide confusing or factually inaccurate information about divorce when an experienced Michigan divorce attorney can assist with your case. Contact the Law Offices of Michael A. Robbins to learn more about the services we provide to clients in Michigan.