Michigan Residency Requirements
Michigan requires that all individuals filing for divorce be state
residents for a minimum of one hundred eighty days prior to filing for
a divorce. All divorce petitions are to be sent to the Michigan
Judicial Circuit Court in the county where one or both of the
An individual is also required to live in a specific county for a
minimum of ten days before he or she can file for a divorce in that
county. Michigan has certain stipulations of residency that can
eliminate this ten-day requirement. An individual must not be United
States citizen or be born in the United States, he or she must have a
child under the age of eighteen produced through the marriage, and the
child must be at risk if he or she were to be taken out of the United
States. If not all portions of these stipulations do apply then a
divorce can be denied.
Michigan Divorce Grounds
The United States requires that every divorce have grounds for which a
divorce will stand. These are the reasons why the individuals want a
divorce. Unlike other states that have various reasons and grounds for
divorce, Michigan has only one ground for which divorce is legal.
Under this ground the individuals must show evidence to the court that
the marriage is irretrievable under all circumstances. It must also be
shown to the court that the marriage is otherwise destroyed. One
individual may petition for divorce and will have to prove his or her
evidence to the court or both individuals may petition together.
Michigan Required Counseling
The court may order counseling for the divorcing individuals if
disputes need to be handled. Such disputes can include child custody
matters and visitation rights. Under counseling the individuals will
meet with a domestic relations mediator to handle the counseling
session. The court may also mandate discussions without a domestic
The state of Michigan is considered to be an equitable distribution
state. This means that all the property acquired through the marriage
will not necessary be split evenly between the spouses, but fairly
If the individuals involved cannot divide the property themselves, the
court will have the liberty to do so. The Michigan court will consider
which spouse brought what property in the marriage and why. Portions of
the property may be distributed through money means instead. The court
will also consider which spouse has custody of any subsequent children
and determine if he or she should be awarded the family home.
In every Michigan divorce the court will decide if spousal support
needs to be paid. The court will consider if awarding spousal support
is in favor of the individuals.
The court will also consider how the spousal support will be used, if
in the maintenance of personal needs or for the maintenance of awarded
property. Spousal support is not awarded in every divorce case. The
court is not required to award spousal support simply because one
individual requested it.