If married people in Michigan are looking to divorce, they are probably in some agreement on why but may not be so much in sync on how. For many divorcing couples, their life savings and any other assets they have are wrapped up in their legal status, so divorce becomes more than emotional independence.
What are spouses' options for dividing property in a divorce?
The easiest option is when spouses agree on the entirety or at least the main points of how to divide property and assets. In this case, separation agreements are relatively easy to create and make official. When spouses do not agree, they may go to mediation or possibly to court.
What happens if a judge has to make decisions on who gets what?
A judge may review a case and require a set of divorcing spouses to attempt mediation if they have not already tried it. If a judge retains the case and rules on who gets what, the guiding principle at work is equitable distribution.
What does equitable distribution mean?
This is different than equal distribution, which would suggest each person gets half the value at stake. Equitable distribution means people get what they should have given the investments of time, money and effort it took to get these assets. If a judge believes one spouse has earned a larger share of a property or asset for these reasons, that person may get most or all ownership.
How can a lawyer help with divorce?
An attorney is suited for reviewing the evidence that a judge may use to determine equitable distribution. Legal representation in divorce court also means that evidence spouses have not considered may be brought up when it matters.