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What is the Process for a Divorce in Michigan?


The Divorce Process in Michigan is probably what you have seen in the movies or on television, except it can get complicated fast. Here at Haque Legal, our goal is to give you as much information as we can to make sure that you know what you are going to go through if you want to file a divorce in Michigan. What should be your expectations? Let us give you a short background.

Decide or Wait To File For Divorce

The first step towards getting a divorce is deciding to get one. If you are the spouse who just woke up one day and realized that you need a divorce, then you will begin the process. If you are the spouse who is in a crumbling marriage, you are probably waiting for the day when one of you decides that enough is enough. Either way, most divorces begin with a thought or a decision.

Filing A Divorce 

If you are decided to get a divorce, your divorce case begins when you file a complaint and all of the required documents in court. Of course, you can do this part yourself but we recommend that you get a lawyer to help you out at the beginning of the divorce process so you do not miss out on anything – especially when it comes to problems that may arise during property division.

Serving Divorce Papers 

After you have filed in court, you must serve the divorce papers to your spouse. You do not need to do the service yourself and one of the Southfield divorce attorneys from Haque Legal to help you out with the service.

The server is required to do a lot of things so make sure that you take note of them:

  • The service must be done to your space personally or via mail, by following all of the mailing rules;
  • The server must fill out and sign the proof of service on the back of one copy of the summons of the case; and
  • The server must file proof of service.

Service of the papers is often a problem if you do not know how to do them. Below is a quick guide on how to do service of divorce papers in Michigan.

  • Serve your spouse with the summons and the complaint as well as any other papers that you filed in court.
  • Take notes of the periods required by law. The summons must be served on your spouse within 91 days from the date of filing in court. Otherwise, the case may be dismissed.
  • You cannot serve the divorce papers to your spouse yourself. We highly suggest that you get help from us at Haque Legal to help serve the papers to your spouse. You may also get help from the police department, a process server, or someone you can trust.

The complicated service process is the main reason why we recommend getting legal assistance at the beginning of the filing.

The service of papers for getting a divorce in Michigan does not begin and end with the serving of the initial papers. You should expect that there are more papers that you need to serve during the divorce proceedings.

Getting An Answer

After getting served divorce papers in Michigan, your spouse is required to file an Answer. The Answer is a response to every part of the complaint. The spouse may either agree or disagree with the complaint and its contents. This is where the difference between a contested divorce and an uncontested divorce comes in.

Of course, even the uncontested divorce comes with complications in the long run and must be handled by a legal professional.

Divorce Wait Period

Michigan’s No-Fault Divorce may seem unfair to some spouses because of the lack of fault attribution. However, the State law is not blind to the protection of the integrity of the family and the protection of the children. Hence, if you have children together, you would have to wait for six months before getting your divorce finalized.

How long is the waiting period? The waiting period is six months beginning at the time that one of the spouses filed for divorce.

What if my spouse and I are already separated before filing? Prior separation is of no moment to the divorce wait period. As long as you have children, the six month period is a requirement.

Can the period be shortened? Yes, the six months can be shortened by a judge. There must be a showing that the full 180 days would cause an unusual hardship to your children. However, this cannot be less than 60 days.

Reconciliation Following A Divorce

In some cases, you and your spouse may reconcile during the 180 day wait period. This is why the waiting period is there in the first place.

In cases of reconciliation, the party who filed for divorce may file a Dismissal form. If the other spouse has answered, he or she must sign the dismissal form. If he has not yet answered, he or she does not need to sign the dismissal form.

When is the divorce finalized?

When all of your ducks are in a row, the properties and debt have been divided, the spousal support and child support is settled, and you have settled the details of your co-parenting, it is considered that the divorce is finalized.

Let Haque Legal Help You With Your Divorce

Now that you know the process of divorce, it is time to get down to it. If you require a lawyer who can assist you with the filing of a divorce or if your spouse has filed for divorce in Michigan, it is important to know that you also have a team that can help you out with your specific needs. Our law firm is dedicated to making sure that those who are innocent will be protected by the law and the full extent of justice will be used.


The article that you have read is based on general applications of the law. It is not legal advice and it is not to be construed as any legal consultation with the firm. No client-attorney relationship is created when you read the articles we have provided.

Let us help you out.

If you need a lawyer to help you during your divorce case, call us immediately. If you have any problem with the law or are seeking justice and truth, our Southfield family law lawyers are standing by to take your call.

The post What is the Process for a Divorce in Michigan? appeared first on Haque Legal.

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