3. COMMON MISTAKES IN A DO-IT-YOURSELF OR “ONLINE” DIVORCE
Sometimes individuals start the divorce process on their own using online or do-it-yourself forms. It is not uncommon for clients to come to our office, asking us to help them correct mistakes they may have made in court or in helping them manage to complete the process and finalize their divorce.
From our work with many clients who started a divorce action but did not understand what the process entailed, here is a brief list of errors, mistakes, and misunderstandings that we commonly see:
– Surprised to learn that you have started a lawsuit and are expected to satisfy all of the
required steps in that lawsuit
– Filing the wrong paperwork for your type of case
– Hoping the court clerks will advise you on how and what to do
– Not properly serving your spouse
– Issues with marital home divisions
– Attempt to divide retirement accounts, especially 401k, 403b and pensions
– Unfamiliarity with the court dates, court processes and requirements of litigation
o Failure to attend
o Failure to prepare required documents/disclosures for court dates
– Difficulty/Inability to obtain require Friend of the Court approval
– Dismissal of case for failure to follow required procedures and meet deadlines
o Property Division which cannot be undone, legally or practically
o Major mistake with Retirement Accounts
o Custody decisions made in haste or without understanding and creating long term problem
o Undoing mistaken paperwork
o Having to start over
If you have attempted to file a divorce on your own and are experiencing difficulties, please know that this is not uncommon.
We are experienced in assisting clients in this situation. We offer traditional legal representation, limited scope services (by the hour or task), and sometimes a modified Streamline Divorce process to assist clients who have started a divorce lawsuit on their own and need help completing the process in court.
The Streamline Divorce℠ was developed by Michigan Family Law Attorney Denise Couling and is offered exclusively through Banfield Couling Law & Mediation, PLLC.
For more information on the Streamline Divorce℠ process or to request our free book, “Navigating Divorce in Michigan: Options to Know Before you File,” visit: https://www.streamlinedivorce.com/
For more information on Banfield Couling Law & Mediation, PLLC or to contact us, visit: https://coulinglaw.com/.
DISCLAIMER: This video is intended to provide general information only and does not constitute legal advice. Each individual’s circumstances require evaluation on a case-by-case basis. Please consult with your legal and financial advisors before taking any legal action regarding divorce or family law. process was developed by Michigan Family Law Attorney Denise Couling and is offered exclusively through Banfield Couling Law & Mediation, PLLC.