The Law Office of Anthony Della Pelle
The Law Office of Anthony Della Pelle is focused on providing high-quality legal services. We will do everything we can to meet your expectations.
We provide aggressive, competent and affordable legal services in state and federal court to individuals and small businesses in the following areas of law:
DivorceChild Custody & PaternityCriminal & DUIJuvenile LawAppealsCivil DisputesAsset Forfeiture…………………………………………………
Whether it’s child custody, divorce, paternity or any other family law issue you are confronting, the Law Office of Anthony Della Pelle can help protect your rights. Generally, there are two ways a divorce action proceeds after the filing of the summons and complaint and the responsive pleading if paternity is not an issue. The divorce may be uncontested, where both parties of the divorce are in agreement, or the divorce may be contested where one of the parties is not in agreement with the divorce or settlement terms. Skillful legal representation can help to ensure that your divorce is settled peaceably and fairly.
If you or your spouse has decided to file for divorce, get legal help at once. Don’t be left vulnerable and uninformed. You need to know the law to protect your own interests and you need your lawyer to help guide all your actions. The Law office of Anthony Della Pelle can help you through this difficult process.
The Waiting Period
After you file for a divorce involving minor children, there is a 180-day statutory waiting or “cooling off” period before the trial court may enter a judgment of divorce. While it is possible for a trial court to find circumstances which justify waiving this period, in most cases the full 180-day waiting period will be observed.
Ordinarily, a trial court will enter “temporary orders” for custody, parenting time (visitation), and child support, while the divorce is pending.
The “Best Interest Factors”
When evaluating child custody, Michigan courts are required to evaluate the “best interest” factors, a series of considerations which are meant to help the court determine the most appropriate custodial environment for a child. Those factors include:
(b) The capacity and disposition of the parties involved to give the child love, affection, and guidance and to continue the education and raising of the child in his or her religion or creed, if any.
(c) The capacity and disposition of the parties involved to provide the child with food, clothing, medical care or other remedial care recognized and permitted under the laws of this state in place of medical care, and other material needs.
(d) The length of time the child has lived in a stable, satisfactory environment, and the desirability of maintaining continuity.
(e) The permanence, as a family unit, of the existing or proposed custodial home or homes.
(f) The moral fitness of the parties involved.
(g) The mental and physical health of the parties involved.
(h) The home, school, and community record of the child.
(i) The reasonable preference of the child, if the court considers the child to be of sufficient age to express preference.
(j) The willingness and ability of each of the parties to facilitate and encourage a close and continuing parent-child relationship between the child and the other parent or the child and the parents.
(k) Domestic violence, regardless of whether the violence was directed against or witnessed by the child.
(l) Any other factor considered by the court to be relevant to a particular child custody dispute.
Calculation of Child Support
Child support is ordinarily calculated in accord with the Michigan Child Support Formula. This calculation is formulaic, and except in high income cases does not leave much room for advocacy. Child support is ordinarily payable until a child reaches the age of eighteen, or until the age of 19-1/2 if the child is still a full-time high school student. Please note that the parties can agree to additional support provisions on a contractual basis, for example if they wish to provide for their children’s college education as part of the divorce agreement, or if they have a disabled child whom they know will require support well past the age of majority.If you are paying or receiving child support, and your financial circumstances change, you may ask the court to modify the amount of child support payable in your case. Please note that under normal circumstances a court will be unable to modify support “retroactively” – that is, any change will ordinarily take effect as of the date of your petition for a modification. It is thus important that you present any challenge to excessive or inadequate support as soon as the changed circumstances come to your attention.
There are two types of “joint custody” in Michigan – “joint legal custody”, under which parents share decision-making responsibility in relation to important life decisions affecting the child, and “joint physical custody”, which usually involves a more equal parenting time arrangement and shared responsibility for the day-to-day care of the child. A Michigan court must consider joint custody if asked to do so by either parent. Most child custody cases result in an award of joint legal custody. Joint physical custody works best when the parents have a strong relationship and ability to communicate in relation to their minor children, despite the circumstances of their divorce.