Grounds for Divorce in Michigan
What are the grounds for divorce in Michigan?
Michigan is a no-fault divorce state, but there is only one standard for a divorce in Michigan, which is stated in MCL 552.6(1), which requires "there has been a breakdown of the marriage relationship to the extent that the objects of matrimony have been destroyed and there remains no reasonable likelihood that the marriage can be preserved.
The party who files for the divorce in Michigan is known as the plaintiff, and this person cannot state any other reason than the above requirement as a grounds for a Michigan divorce. The plaintiff cannot provide anymore detail of why they are requesting the divorce. The defendant is the other spouse, and this party may either admit or deny the allegations of the plaintiff. Even if the defendant admits to the plaintiff's claim, a divorce judgment in Michigan may not be entered until evidence is presented in open court that there has been a breakdown in the marriage relationship. A divorce ends a valid marriage in Michigan
For a court to a Michigan divorce judgment, it must have jurisdiction over the two parties, and the residency requirements must be met, which are listed in MCL 552.9(1), which states
(1) A judgment of divorce shall not be granted by a court in this state in an action for divorce unless the complainant or defendant has resided in this state for 180 days immediately preceding the filing of the complaint and, except as otherwise provided in subsection (2), the complainant or defendant has resided in the county in which the complaint is filed for 10 days immediately preceding the filing of the complaint.
(2) A person may file a complaint for divorce in any county in the state without meeting the 10-day requirement set forth in subsection (1) if all of the following apply and are set forth in the complaint:
(a) The defendant was born in, or is a citizen of, a country other than the United States of America.
(b) The parties to the divorce action have a minor child or children.
(c) There is information that would allow the court to reasonably conclude that the minor child or children are at risk of being taken out of the United States of America and retained in another country by the defendant.
What if two spouses file for a Michigan divorce at the same time?
If parties file for a divorce in two different counties in the State of Michigan, the first court to obtain jurisdiction will hear the case. Each county clerk uses a time stamp when someone files for divorce. If different states are involved, either state would be able to hear the case, but simple convenience of the parties may determine the right court, and if minor children are involved the home state of the child will determine which state is the right state. If both husband and wife file for divorce in Michigan, the complaint with the earliest time stamp with be the Plaintiff.
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