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Clinton Township Divorce Law Blog

Who gets the pets in a divorce?

One thing many Michigan couples fail to consider when undergoing a divorce is who gets the pets. Among the numerous other difficult considerations this can be the most challenging. There are steps you can take to mitigate the issue however, which will also ensure that your animals continue to be well-cared for. PetMD explains how to handle pet custody during a divorce.  

Keep the best interests of your pet in mind

Common pitfalls of divorce to avoid

Whether you think of your divorce as a fresh start or lament over the end of the marriage, you will have to deal with some pitfalls because of it. Until the divorce is finalized, you have to make sure that you aren't doing anything that can work against you. This isn't always easy: Some of the daily activities to which you are accustomed may need to be paused.

Here are some common things that can work against you as you are legally ending your marriage.

What is parallel parenting?

If you’ve recently undergone a contentious divorce in Michigan, the prospect of co-parenting may seem daunting. Parallel parenting is another option that allows you to effectively raise your children as a cohesive unit while maintaining a comfortable distance from your ex-spouse. Psychology Today explains this parenting trend and why it may be a good option for exes who can’t see eye to eye.

Benefits of parallel parenting

Challenging your prenuptial agreement

Many in Clinton Township may see signing a prenuptial agreement as a prudent decision that could end up protecting both parties to a marriage. Such reasoning no doubt contributed to why you may have signed one. Yet if you are now preparing for a divorce, you could be second-guessing that decision (or even questioning your soon-to-be ex-spouse's motives in having you sign one in the first place). Many come to us here at The Law Offices of Lorrie J. Zahodnic, P.C. with the same concerns, wondering if there is a way for them to challenge such agreements. 

Up until recently, doing so may have been quite difficult, as Michigan law viewed any contracts made while you and a partner were considering marriage as remaining in full effect after your union was formalized. Yet legislation introduced last year may open the door for you to challenge your prenuptial agreement. House Bill No. 4751 (as shared by the Michigan Legislature) would now allow you to contest your prenuptial agreement if your spouse did not provide you with an adequate financial disclosure prior to signing it. The amended law would also make it possible for you to challenge your agreement if you were compelled to sign it under duress or through some method of fraud. 

Tips on talking to your kids after a divorce

Among the most challenging aspects of a divorce is talking to your kids about the issue. Many Michigan parents struggle with informing their children of the news out of fear that they will be left anxious and unsure about their role in the family. While it can be a tough conversation to have, there are steps you and your ex-spouse can take to mitigate the emotional fallout affecting your children.

According to TodaysParent.com, how you talk to your kids is dependent on how old they are. For instance, with very young children the focus should be on how much the children are still loved by both parents, even though the family dynamic will change. Small children lack the intellectual acuity to comprehend adult matters, so it’s not necessary to go into too much detail. Reassurance should be ample however, from both the custodial and non-custodial parent.

Understanding when a child support obligation ends

A common question asked by many of those bound to the terms of a child support obligation in Clinton Township is how long will they have to continue making their payments. Some may view the fact that they would even ask this question as evidence that such parents view paying child support as a burden. Yet that may not be the case at all; rather, they may simply want to ensure that they are fulfilling the purpose of such an arrangement, which is to ensure that their kids have adequate resources to meet their needs as opposed to being a punitive obligation. 

Per the National Conference of State Legislatures, Michigan law calls for support payments to end once a child reaches 18 years of age. As is the case with many matters related to divorce, however, there are certain exceptions to this rule. The law recognizes that that there are scenarios where children may reach a point of being able to support themselves prior to turning 18. These can include a child marrying before reaching the age of majority, joining the military, or becoming emancipated. 

Selling your marital home

While deciding to get a divorce might be the most difficult decision associated with the end of your marriage, it is by no means the only one. You and your soon-to-be ex-spouse must then determine how to deal with the assets and property you own together. If you are like most of the clients that we here at The Law Offices of Lorrie J. Zahodnic, P.C. work with, your most valuable marital asset is your home in Clinton Township. Contrary to popular belief, fighting to keep the house is not your only (and perhaps not even your best) option. 

Per the website NerdWallet.com, the most common options when dealing with your marital home in your divorce are: 

  • One of you keeping the house and refinancing the mortgage to remove the other from it
  • You both retaining ownership of it
  • Selling the house and splitting the proceeds equally

Peace in divorce is possible with the right attitude

Ending your marriage is a decision that impacts you and your children. The focus of your days between the decision date and the finalization of the divorce is trying to make things as easy as possible. One of the most taxing aspects is working out the specifics of the split with your ex.

There are many things that you will have to work through. Going into the situation with the determination to make it work is beneficial. This is especially true if you do have children who will have to learn to live in two homes. Here are some tips to help encourage a friendly divorce:

Punches thrown between Jack Osbourne and wife's new boyfriend

This may go without saying, but divorce can be tough on those in Clinton Township who are experiencing it. Many equate this toughness to having to set aside harsh feelings and emotions for one's soon-to-be ex-spouse in order to work through proceedings and come to an acceptable solution, yet oftentimes, the most difficult things that those seeking a separation have to accept is the end of their relationships. Marital partners may invest a good deal of emotion into each other, and such bonds may not break easily. This may be way tensions often escalate when those involved in divorces are forced to witness the realities of their current situations. 

Some are saying that such a realization may be why Jack Osbourne (former reality TV star and son of the famed rock musician Ozzy Osbourne) reportedly got into an altercation with another man recently. Osbourne and his wife of five years are currently going through a divorce, yet reports taken from input offered by those close to the couple seemed to suggest that he might have been under the impression that the pair were working towards a reconciliation. However, Osbourne was visiting his soon-to-be ex-wife's house, her new boyfriend showed up. The encounter ultimately ended with Osbourne punching the man and police report being filed (it is currently unclear whether the boyfriend will press charges). Friends of Osbourne are speculating that seeing his ex-wife already dating another man might have been too much for him to handle, thus prompting him to do what he allegedly did. 

How to navigate co-parenting conflicts

For divorced parents in Michigan, navigating co-parenting conflicts is not always easy. You may hold real animosity towards your ex or you might have disagreement on fundamental decisions regarding your child, such as those involving academic or medical needs. In either case, knowing how to properly manage conflict is crucial, which is why Psychology Today recommends the following tips.

Keep Rules Consistent

Lorrie J. Zahodnic

"I will hold you up until you can stand on your own two feet."

Lorrie J. Zahodnic, P.C. has provided skilled and compassionate legal guidance to Michiganders in family law matters for over 20 years.

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