Divorce/Custody

Attorney Tomal personally knows what it’s like to go through a divorce and Attorney Tomal knows what it takes to get physical custody of a child — He has done both.  Attorney Tomal will guide you each step of the way in a divorce proceding and will fight for you for the custody of your boy or girl!  Attorney Tomal will protect your assets from your spouse, get you the property that is just, get you the parenting time you deserve and he will make sure child support is fair.  You should not lose your life savings simply because you have been married and you should not walk away from your marriage with nothing.  Attorney Tomal will give your case competent,  prompt and aggressive attention.

Attorney Tomal has handled hundreds of cases in the Lansing MI and the East Lansing MI areas, along with Ingham, Eaton, Shiawassee, Ionia, Clinton, Jackson  and Livingston counties.  Attorney Tomal has handled cases from the simple to the most complex.  Attorney Tomal’s practice areas include:
— Divorce
— Annulment
— Legal Separation
— Custody
— Friend of the Court
— Conciliation Conference
— Referee Hearings
— DeNovo Hearings before Judges
— Parenting Time
— Child Support
— Alimony
— Property Division
— Discovery
— Finding Hidden Assets
— Mediation
— Trial
— Domestic Violence
— Personal Protection Orders (PPO)
— Prenuptial Agreements
— Post Divorce Issues
— Paternity
— Complex Marital Estates
— Residency Changes
— Judgments
— ProCon Hearing

COMMON QUESTIONS:
Attorney Tomal routinely receives common questions from new clients.  For a free confidential consultation, call Attorney Tomal so that he can answer all of your questions, 517-323-9340: 
— How does the divorce process work?
— How to prepare for a divorce?
— How do I start the divorce process?
— I received a Complaint for Divorce, what do I do?
— What are the costs or attorney fees involved?
— Can I get my spouse to pay for my attorney fee?
— What should I do prior to filing the case?
— What does marital fault mean?
— Am I entitled to alimony or spousal support?
— If I get divorced, what kind of property settlement am I entitled to?
— How much will I receive or have to pay in child support?
— Can I change the locks to my house if my spouse has moved out?
— Who should pay the house mortgage, utility bills and monthly credit card debt?
— Am I entitled to my spouse’s pension or retirement? 
— What happens at the Friend of the Court Conciliation Conference?
— Do I have to get the Friend of the Court involved in my case?
— How do I get a Personal Protection Order (PPO) against my spouse?
— If my child does not want to go with his dad or mom, do I have to force my child to go on parenting time?
— If my spouse has not been paying child support, do I have to let him or her see the children?
— How will the judge or FOC determine who recieves custody of my child?

CONTESTED DIVORCE:
A contested divorce means a husband and wife cannot come to an agreement on all terms of the divorce.  For example, a couple cannot agree upon who should get primary custody of a child, the amount of parenting time, the amount of child support or how to divide assets and debts.  You will need a skilled and experienced attorney to get you the results you want.

UNCONTESTED DIVORCE:
An  uncontested divorce means a husband and wife want to end their marriage and have agreed on all issues of their case.  An uncontested divorce is usually preferred and it will make the divorce process much faster, cheaper and stress free.  A couple will still need an attorney to prepare the paperwork and guide the couple through the divorce process.

CUSTODY:
There are two different types of custody: Legal custody and physical custody. 

LEGAL CUSTODY:
Legal custody generally means that both parents have the right to participate in making important decisions that impact a child’s life.  Both parents get to have input regarding a child’s education, medical needs and religion.  In most cases, both parents are granted joint legal custody.  However, in some cases, one parent will be granted sole legal custody.   

PHYSICAL CUSTODY:
Physical custody means who will the child live with.  Primary physical custody generally means a child will live with one parent and the other parent will get parenting time every other weekend and possibly one day during the week.  Joint physical custody means the child will live with each parent an equal amount of time, like one week on and one week off.

BEST INTERESTS OF THE MINOR CHILD:
When determining which parent should get physical custody of a minor child, the FOC and/or Judge will consider the sum total of the “Best Interest” factors:
— The love, affection and other emotional ties existing between the parties involved and the child.
— The capacity and disposition of the parties involved to give the child love, affection and guidance and continuation of the educating and raising of the child in its religion or creed, if any.
— 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.
— The length of time the child has lived in a stable, satisfactory environment and the desirability of maintaining continuity.
— The permanence, as a family unit, of the existing or proposed custodial home or homes.
— The moral fitness of the parties involved.
— The mental and physical health of the parties involved.
— The home, school and community record of the child.
— The reasonable preference of the child, if the court deems the child to be of sufficient age to express preference.
— The willingness and ability of each of the parents to facilitate and encourage a close and continuing parent-child relationship between the child and the other parent.
— Any other factor considered by the court to be relevant to a particular child custody dispute.

CHILD SUPPORT:
Child support is calculated by using the Michigan Child Support Formula.  This formula considers the income of both parties, the number of overnights the  child  will spend with the parents, along with other factors to calculate the child support obligation.  Attorney Tomal uses the same computer software that the Friend of the Could utilizes.  Attorney Tomal can tell you exactly what the Friend of the Court will tell you. 

ALIMONY/SPOUSAL SUPPORT:
Alimony can be granted in a divorce case involving or not involving children.  Generally speaking, an alimony award depends upon the past relations and conduct of the parties, the length of the marriage, the parties’ ability to work, the source and amount of property awarded to the parties, the age of the parties, the ability to pay alimony, the parties’ present situation, the parties’ needs, the parties’ health, the prior standard of living of the parties, whether the parties support others and general principles of equity.  Alimony can have a devastating effect upon your quality of life so make sure you talk with an experienced attorney like Attorney Tomal before you conclude any divorce case.

PROPERTY DIVISION:
Generally speaking, each party is awarded 50% of the net value of the marital assets and marital debts.  Property and debt acquired prior to the marriage is generally not considered to be part of the marital estate.  Property and debt that was acquired during the marriage is subject to division.  It does not matter whose name the assets or debts are in. 

FAULT:
Michigan is a no-fault state which means that if one spouse wants out of the marriage, he or she can get a divorce even if the other spouse does not want a divorce.  However, fault is still considered in the overall property division, in the case of awarding alimony and determining physical custody.  Generally speaking, each party is awarded 50% of the net value of the marital assets and marital debts.  However, if a party can prove the other party was at “fault,” the court may then determine that the marital assets should be divided 55/45 or 60/40 instead of 50/50.  Likewise, marital debts should be divided 55/45 or 60/40 instead of 50/50.  Fault can have an enormous impact upon your divorce case.  Consult with an experienced attorney like Attorney Tomal before you file your case. 

Eric is aggressive, affordable, experienced and he gets results.  Call for a free confidential appointment 517-323-9340 with Attorney Tomal. In case of emergency, contact Attorney Tomal at 517-230-4080.

Eric X. Tomal
Tomal & Dudley, P.C.
4112 W. Saint Joe Hwy.
Lansing, MI 48917
Email: Etomal@aol.com
517-323-9340

We provide legal services in the entire State of Michigan:
Attorney Lansing
Attorney East Lansing
Attorney Holt
Attorney Grand Ledge
Attorney Haslett
Attorney Okemos
Attorney Dewitt
Attorney St. Johns
Attorney Charlotte
Attorney Portland
Attorney Owosso
Attorney Jackson
Attorney Williamston
Attorney Laingsburg
Attorney Mason
Attorney Eaton Rapids
Attorney Howell
Attorney Corunna
Attorney Perry
Attorney Ionia
Attorney Olivet
Attorney Battle Creek

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