What If My Spouse Refuses Divorce in Michigan?
You may be wanting to get a divorce, but your spouse might have other ideas. Michigan has no-fault divorces, but can your spouse stop you from proceeding?
The truth of the matter is, your spouse cannot stop you from getting a divorce in Michigan. You do not have to get your spouse’s consent or prove marital misconduct because Michigan has no-fault divorce. No matter how much your spouse wants to stay married, you do not have to remain in the marriage. A Michigan divorce attorney can help you get a divorce so that you can move forward with your life.
No-Fault Divorce in Michigan
No-fault divorce does not require witnesses to provide grounds for the judge to dissolve the marriage. If you want a no-fault divorce in Michigan, you have to allege in your divorce petition that the marital relationship is irretrievably broken and there is no reasonable likelihood that it can get restored. You will have to confirm that fact before the judge will grant the divorce.
Your Spouse May Attempt These Tricks
If your spouse does not want the divorce or wants to make your life difficult, they might try one of these tactics to make the judge doubt whether the relationship is over:
- Delay moving out of the house so they can tell the judge that the two of you still loved together after the divorce got filed.
- Find excuses to sleep over at your place, like pretending to be sick when dropping off the children.
- Take you to dinner for a special day, like your birthday or a holiday, and try to seduce you. Many judges will dismiss a divorce case if they learn that the parties had sexual intercourse after the filing of the divorce.
Trust your instincts if you feel suspicious about something your spouse is doing during the divorce. It can be smart to talk with your lawyers about how to avoid situations that could give your spouse an argument that the marriage can be preserved.
What Happens If Your Spouse Refuses to Negotiate in a Michigan Divorce
People who do not want to get divorced often become obstinate, thinking that they can prevent the divorce if there is no settlement agreement. This tactic does not work.
If the parties do not resolve their issues amicably, the judge will make the decisions for them. People tend to be happier with terms that they chose rather than having a stranger impose the conditions they will have to live under for years.
Sometimes a judge will make the stubborn party pay some of the attorney fees of the other spouse, but this outcome usually requires outrageous conduct. A party is unlikely to get better terms by stonewalling than instead of negotiating in good faith.
Pro Se Divorce-This Will Cost You More in the Long Run
Acting as your own lawyer in a lawsuit is called “pro se.” Many people try to handle their divorces on their own without a lawyer, only to regret it later, particularly if their spouse hires an attorney. You don’t want to have to hire a lawyer to clean up the mistakes afterward. Doing that can cost more than if you had an attorney take care of your divorce from the beginning.
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