Navigating the complexities of divorce is never easy, but at John Engman & Associates, P.C., we are here to provide you with expert guidance through the divorce settlement process in Grand Rapids. Our dedicated team has over 30 years of experience practicing in the Kent County Family Court, making us a trusted source for divorce settlement assistance.
Understanding Settlement Options in a Divorce
Divorce settlements involve various options, and it’s essential to explore these avenues to find the most suitable resolution for your unique situation. Our experienced Grand Rapids divorce settlement attorneys are here to assist you in:
Assessing Your Case’s Potential for Settlement
One of the first questions we address is, “Will my case settle?” Our goal is to explore settlement possibilities, potentially saving both parties time and money by avoiding lengthy court battles. Unless you like to pay high attorney fees, it is in everyone’s best interest to try to settle out of court.
If you have areas in which you simply cannot reach an agreement, divorce mediation might also be a great avenue. This allows you to work with a third party to see if you can come to an agreement. Remember that even if the agreement isn’t exactly what you wanted, it’s often better than handing over all your savings to attorneys. While we are a divorce settlement attorney, we do want you to keep as much of your assets as possible. Our goal is to try to settle as many cases out of court as possible. Not only do you save money, you have a little more control over the outcome. Going to court will put your assets and life into the hands of the court, people who don’t know you or your situation entirely. While we have won many cases in court, and we aren’t afraid to go to court, it’s not always the best avenue for every client.
Our team of settlement attorneys will look at your case and advise you on what would be best for your situation. We understand that divorce is a very difficult time in your life, and sometimes it’s hard to think straight, which is why we are here.
Divorce Settlement Assistance for Your Michigan Divorce
Navigating the legal procedures of a Michigan divorce can be a daunting task, especially when it comes to settlement. Our team is well-versed in Michigan divorce laws, including waiting periods and other regulatory requirements. We provide comprehensive guidance to ensure your divorce proceedings align with the legal framework.
When facing divorce, the majority of individuals hope to reach a resolution without the need for a trial. The approach taken often depends on the level of agreement between the parties and the complexity of key issues, such as property division and child custody. Here are the various pathways individuals may consider:
Kitchen Table Negotiations: In cases where couples have already come to a preliminary agreement, they may engage in informal discussions, often referred to as “kitchen table negotiations.” These conversations aim to find an amicable settlement without formal legal intervention.
Formal Settlement Negotiations: When parties find it challenging to agree independently, they may involve their respective attorneys to engage in more structured and formal settlement negotiations. Experienced family law lawyers take the lead in advocating for specific terms and concessions.
Divorce Mediation: In situations where direct negotiation remains unproductive, some couples turn to divorce mediation. A trained mediator facilitates discussions between the parties, assisting them in reaching a mutually acceptable agreement.
Divorce Litigation: Unfortunately, in certain cases, no agreement can be reached through the aforementioned methods, and divorce litigation becomes the final option. Legal proceedings may be necessary to resolve complex and contentious issues.
The choice of pathway depends on individual circumstances and the willingness of the parties to collaborate. Our experienced Grand Rapids divorce settlement attorneys at John Engman & Associates, P.C., are here to provide guidance and support through these processes. We aim to help you explore the best path to a successful divorce resolution, whether through negotiation, mediation or, when needed, litigation.
The Michigan Waiting Period
In Michigan, the waiting period for divorce is mandated by Michigan Compiled Laws 552.9f. Understanding the waiting period is crucial:
- A Michigan divorce without a minor child can be granted after 60 days have passed since the filing of the bill of complaint.
- A Michigan divorce with a minor child (under the age of 18) cannot be finalized until at least 6 months have passed since the bill of complaint was filed, according to the same statute, MCL 552.9f.
Even when you and your spouse believe that settling your divorce case will be straightforward, it’s prudent to seek guidance from experienced Grand Rapids divorce attorneys. Divorce, like other civil legal matters, is subject to specific laws and procedural rules that must be adhered to. Each party involved in a divorce is obligated to follow the substantive, procedural, and practical facets of pursuing a legally compliant divorce, including:
- Ensuring the proper execution, filing, and service of legal documents.
- Providing timely and sufficient responses to document requests.
- Complying with other legally mandated discovery matters.
Failure to meet these legal procedural requirements can lead to delays in proceedings or even result in the dismissal of the case. At John Engman & Associates, P.C., our skilled legal team is here to provide you with the necessary guidance to navigate the legal aspects of divorce in full compliance with Michigan laws and procedures.
At John Engman & Associates, P.C., Our Divorce and Family Law Attorneys are Here for You
Even if you possess the ability to navigate the complexities of the legal system, seeking the assistance of our attorneys during settlement negotiations is a wise decision. Divorce judgments are legally binding decrees that must be adhered to unless successfully appealed. The appeals process for divorce can be expensive, time-consuming, and offer uncertain outcomes, particularly when the divorce is settled by mutual consent.
Appealing a divorce with both parties’ consent has limited grounds, so it’s crucial to get it right the first time.
In addition to ensuring that you meet all the legal prerequisites for divorce, our divorce settlement lawyers offer compassionate support while maintaining a perspective that is not clouded by past relationship history and emotion.
Divorce often stirs intense emotions, and unchecked feelings can disrupt the divorce settlement negotiation process and its outcomes. For example:
- Couples who have previously struggled to resolve issues may give up on their rightful entitlements too easily just to expedite the divorce process, especially if one party feels bullied, afraid, or fatigued.
- In some cases, one party may be so averse to courtroom conflict that they are willing to agree to almost anything to avoid it.
- The weight of stress and guilt can also impact one or both parties, hindering their ability to make sound decisions that serve their long-term interests and those of their children.
Our experienced divorce settlement lawyers will serve as your advocate during negotiations, ensuring that the process remains focused on the application of the law to relevant issues. Together, we will work towards finding favorable and equitable solutions. Your future and that of your family are our top priorities.
Your Trusted Grand Rapids Divorce Settlement Attorneys
At John Engman & Associates, P.C., we are committed to providing you with sound legal counsel and support to help you navigate the divorce settlement process effectively. Our aim is to reach amicable resolutions whenever possible, saving time and money for all parties involved.
Contact us today at 616-454-5222 to schedule a consultation with our experienced Grand Rapids divorce settlement attorneys. We are here to guide you through the legal procedures, answer your questions, and explore the best settlement options for your Michigan divorce.