Under Michigan law, when a couple is contemplating the termination of their marriage, they have two options: divorce or separation. In Michigan, the only way for a couple to obtain a legal separation is by filing a "Separate Maintenance" action.
The procedure for obtaining a Judgment of Separate Maintenance in Michigan is similar to the procedure for a getting divorce. A couple must file a lawsuit in the county circuit court, testifying to a breakdown of the marital relationship and that the parties are unwilling or unable to reconcile. When a Judgment of Separate Maintenance is issued by the court, a couple technically remains married, which prohibits either spouse from remarrying. Separate Maintenance may be beneficial to the couple for religious, health care, or immigration-related concerns. With Separate Maintenance, the court will divide the marital assets, determine child support and visitation if there were children to the marriage, and award spousal support if necessary.
If you are contemplating divorce or legal separation, Attorney Chatterton can help you evaluate your options and decide upon the best avenue to help you achieve your goals and safeguard the interests of your children. Contact us today at (810) 767-0407.