With a few swift key strikes, your case could go down in flames. If you think I'm exaggerating, think about Tiger Woods, Jesse James or, for you Detroiters, Kwame Kilpatrick, and think again. It's easy in our social networking gluttony, where friends from way-back-when are an internet connection away and your computer keyboard is your sounding board, to rant about your case. After all, it is mostly free, you don't have to pay your lawyer or your therapist to listen to you, your spouse or ex is not your friend or follower, everyone who is your friend and follower wants to know what's going on, and a status update or a wall post is the easiest way to tell them how you feel - exactly how you feel. And that's the problem.
Jack Smith's ex-wife sent him a ranting letter every month -- asking why their house had not sold -- and every month sealed the letter with the same address label, one of those free labels that come in droves with holiday themes and "Mr. and Mrs." so-and-so -- Joselyn Smith. It was annoying enough that she sent the letter. He wanted to keep the house, but the judge ordered them sell it and split the profits or debt. It was an extra kick that she still used her married name on those address labels. They had been divorced and trying to sell their home for a year, and she clung to that last name as if out of spite. She used it on her driver's license, her stationery, her e-mail signature, her credit cards, her online profile, everywhere. And she was not what you would call a wholesome ex-wife -- she had a reputation for fighting, for gossiping, for spending, for partying. But Jack could not force her to change her name.
To obtain a divorce in Michigan, one of the parties must have been a resident of the state for at least 180 days and of the county in which he or she files for divorce for at least 10 days prior to filing the complaint for divorce. These residency requirements are jurisdictional, meaning neither party can waive them (say, for example, if you only resided in county A for 9 days but nonetheless wanted a divorce in county A).
How do you handle a breakup? In a family law practice, this is a common - and necessary - topic. Family law lawyers handle your emotions just as must as your legal matters. These are inextricable when a family - of any makeup, young or old, children or no children, first marriage or one of many - breaks down. While we are not mental health professionals, we can give you anecdotal advice and tips. Any lawyer who tells you otherwise does not have your best interests - personal and legal - in mind. In addition to consulting with a mental health professional, you should consider the following.
While every family -- and, therefore, every family court case -- is unique, there are certain topics we address in all of them. Some may not apply to your case (e.g, if you do not have children), but all of the topics in your case you will find with our PFL Master List: