In Michigan, if you cannot afford a divorce attorney because your spouse has or controls all of the money, you can request that the court order your spouse to pay for your attorney! It is a rare exception from the general rule that the parties to a legal action have to pay for their own attorney. You can also file a motion for temporary custody and child support while the divorce is pending! Plus, virtually every divorce case in Michigan will be ordered to mediation long before there is an expense trial to worry about. Most divorces are resolved prior to or during mediation. Therefore, you really have more options than you might think. Feel free to contact me if you have any other questions or concerns about divorce in Michigan.
DISCLAIMER: This answer is provided as general information, which may not be appropriate for the specific facts of your particular situation. No attorney-client relationship has been established based on this limited communication. You are advised to consult with an attorney in your jurisdiction before taking any action or inaction that may affect your legal rights. www.hecklerlawoffice.com
It depends how badly you REALLY want the divorce. You can sue for divorce and spend months and months fighting over what I'm gathering isn't a huge amount of money, or you can simply walk away with your divorce. If you absolutely cannot survive without the money coming to you, then you need to hire an attorney and be prepared for a long, expensive fight. If he won't budge, he won't budge until a judge makes him budge. It's your choice. For my clients I tell them this - you (and you alone) have to decide where your line in the sand is - if it's money, then be prepared to spend a lot (or all of it or more) to get it. Otherwise, move on with your life and be happy.
This answer is not to be considered a response to a specific legal issue in a specific jurisdiction - it is to be considered only a general response to a hypothetical scenario posed by the questioner. For specific legal advice, please consult with a licensed attorney in your jurisdiction.
I don't know what state you live in, but can suggest the following:
You should contact an attorney in the state in which you live. The courts have the ability, once you file for divorce, to enter orders that will require your husband to continue to support the household as he has been doingl in other words, to pay the bills and give you money for your expenses, whether you are living in the same house or living apart.
If you have children, the court can order him to pay child support if you and he are not living together.
Contact an attorney.
You should talk to an attorney for advice on what your rights are and what to expect. A court can force your husband to share in any refunds from taxes and also support for you depending upon the circumstances of your divorce. Good luck to you.
Dear Avvo subscriber,
In general, it is always best to consult with a family law attorney on all the relevant and particular facts in your matter.
The answer to your question first depends upon which state has jurisdiction over the matter. My answer will assume Michigan courts have jurisdiction.
If I were in your position I would consider requesting the court for attorney fees. The relevant Michigan court rule, MCR 3.206(C) provides guidance. Pursuant to this court rule, you can request attorney fees at any time and you must demonstrate enough facts to show that you are unable to bear the expense of the action and that your spouse is able to pay. Whether you are awarded attorney fees heavily depends on the facts of your case.
This request for attorney fees can be done in the form of a "Motion for Attorney Fees." Of course, you must have already filed a complaint for divorce prior to filing the motion.
If it is a pre-judgment motion it is typically cheaper than motions filed post-judgment.
Another option is to ask your attorney to try and negotiate with your spouse's attorney for the provision of attorney fees even before you file. If you both agree, you may be able to get into pre-filing mediation which can be a lot cheaper as well.
Lana Panagoulia Law handles all types of domestic cases and you are welcome to contact us for a free telephone consultation. Hopefully we will be better able to assist you.
Very Truly Yours,
Attorney and Counselor at Law
(734) 769-LANA (5262)
Lana Panagoulia Law, PLLC
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