Michigan Spousal Support- DV Charges
If you're charged with domestic violence in Michigan, and your spouse files for divorcce, you're worried about your kids, your home, your retirement, and how much this is going to cost you in terms of both child and spousal support.
In Michigan spousal support is determined by 11 factors:
- past relations and conduct of the parties
- the length of the marriage
- the ability for the parties' to work
- source and property awarded to the parties
- the age of the husband and wife
- the ability of a party to pay spousal support
- the present situation of the husband and wife
- the needs of each person
- the health of each person
- the prior standard of living, and whether the parties support others (kids)
- what's fair and equitable?
There is no exact formula like there is for child support in Michigan divorces. Here in Michigan, judges rely guidelines for spousal support, but not in the same way as child support, which is mandated as a tool for determining child support in Michigan.
In Michigan, fault may be considered in Michigan cases, but the court cannot assign a disproportional value to this one factor. A Michigan court must make findings on each of the above 11 factors, and the record must reflect the court's reason for the amount of the award. The court will look to be just and reasonable under the circumstances of each individual case. Domestic violence could of course count as "fault", which is why handling the charge in the right way is so important.
Spousal support in Michigan can be modified due to a change in the circumstances unless the parties have previously agreed that spousal support will be barred from modification This is different than child support in Michigan divorce cases, which the parties cannot make any agreements about modification.
A person receiving spousal support in Michigan will no longer be entitled to the support if they re-marry, absent an agreement between the parties. Simply living with an other adult is not considered the same as re-marriage by purposes of terminating spousal support. If the payor dies, this does not terminate the obligation to pay the other spouse; the recipient spouse is entitled to continued support from the estate of the payor spouse. It may be advisable for the recipient spouse to have a life insurance policy for continued payment if the payor spouse passes away.
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