When spouses no longer wish to live together, they might still prefer to remain married for one of many reasons. Perhaps the couple’s religious beliefs discourage divorce, or unwinding financial ties seems too burdensome. Whatever motivation exists, seeking a separate maintenance arrangement could be a suitable option for Michigan spouses who want to separate while remaining legally wed. The Law Offices of Mais & Sible, Attorneys at Law represents clients in separate maintenance proceedings so that fair, reliable terms can be set to address issues such as custody, child support, property division & spousal support. As in divorce, strict rules govern the parties’ interactions. Once the court issues an order, it could be in place for many years, so it is critical to retain an experienced family law attorney to safeguard your interests. At The Law Offices of Mais & Sible, Attorneys at Law, we tailor to your particular situation and treat each aspect of these discussions.
Separate Maintenance Proceedings in Michigan
Either spouse may file for separate maintenance in the county where they reside. As with spouses filing marriage dissolution petitions, one of the spouses must have lived in the state for at least 6 months for the separate maintenance filing to be valid. The party who is served with the papers has the option to opt for divorce instead. At The Law Offices of Mais & Sible, Attorneys at Law, we will outline the necessary steps and develop a strategy suited to your values and objectives. Though the outcome is different, separate maintenance terms cover similar matters to divorce orders, such as:
Child Custody & Visitation - No matter what differences exist between parents, it’s important for both to maintain strong bonds with their children even as they live in separate residences.
Spousal Support - If there is a substantial discrepancy in the parties’ incomes, we advise on the likelihood that spousal support will be awarded and the potential amount and length of spousal support which may be awarded by the court and work to reach an appropriate arrangement.
Property Division - Tricky questions can arise during separate maintenance actions relating to the marital home, joint bank accounts, access to investments and other assets and debts shared by the spouses. After reviewing your marital property in detail, we will pursue a result that helps you move forward on a solid foundation.
Child Support - At all times, parents are responsible for meeting the financial needs of their children. In a separation, our firm assists with discussions over rates, special provisions, modifications & enforcement.
As the couple is not terminating their legal relationship, reaching agreement on these concerns through negotiations often benefits everyone. We can help spouses find creative solutions to disputed issues and advocate for them in court if need be. Once the separate maintenance order is in effect, it can be used as the basis of divorce terms should the couple eventually opt to dissolve the marriage.
While there are not difficult procedural hurdles for those seeking a divorce within the state, there might be compelling reasons to remain married even if you no longer share a home, such as maintaining health insurance coverage or hoping that circumstances will allow for a reconciliation at some point in the future. Whether these considerations, faith concerns or any other factors are shaping your thoughts about what to do next, The Law Offices of Mais & Sible, Attorneys at Law provides counsel on separate maintenance actions for husbands & wives who wish to separate from their spouse.