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Divorce and Financial Concerns Sterling Heights Michigan


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Divorce and Financial Concerns Sterling Heights Michigan



The uncertainty of meeting financial obligations is a primary concern facing individuals who are ending a relationship. Your dual-income household may be shifting to two single-income households, or one spouse may have been out of the workforce for an extended period of time.

At Mellin Robinson, P.C., in Sterling Heights, Michigan, our experienced family law attorneys will protect your rights and help you navigate the financial steps that are part of divorce, including property division and spousal support.

Same-sex couples and partners who are not in a legally recognized marriage may encounter the same property division disputes that arise in divorce. We have the resources and experience to evaluate the situation and help resolve property disputes between unmarried partners.

The decisions that are made regarding how to divide assets and debts that accrued during your marriage will have a significant impact on your post-divorce life. Many of these cannot be reversed once they are approved by the court, so it is imperative to have an experienced and knowledgeable family law attorney on your side to protect your interests.


We work with clients from diverse economic backgrounds, including doctors, lawyers, self-employed individuals and other professionals. Our legal team has experience handling division of complex assets, including closely held businesses, partnerships, extensive real estate holdings, pension plans, expansive stock portfolios and more.

In high-asset divorces, there may be a concern that one party is hiding assets or is not being completely forthcoming about salary or the revenue generated by a family-owned business. We work with tax professionals, forensic accountants, real estate appraisers, valuation professionals and other financial specialists who help us obtain a clear understanding of all marital assets and debts.


Michigan is an equitable distribution state, which means that all marital property will be divided in an equitable manner, but not necessarily equally. If the parties in a divorce are unable to reach agreement on how to divide their marital assets, the court first distinguishes between marital property and separate property, and then designates how the marital assets will be divided.

Marital property includes all assets and debts that either spouse acquired during the marriage regardless of how the property is titled. Nonmarital property consists of any assets that either spouse owned before the marriage, as well as assets that were received as a gift or inheritance at any time, as long as it has been kept separate from marital assets.

Declining real estate values throughout Metro Detroit has left many households with mortgage debt that is greater than the value of their home. We counsel our clients on the wisest moves for long-term financial stability when deciding whether to stay in a family home.

At Mellin Robinson, P.C., in Sterling Heights, Michigan, our thorough understanding of Michigan property division laws allows us to ensure that our clients' rights are protected regarding the division of marital assets and the security of nonmarital assets. Because our practice is focused entirely on divorce and family law, we are well-versed in the important legal decisions that impact rulings in this area and we are proven capable of bringing creative solutions to complex disputes.


Our Sterling Heights MI divorce lawyers have experience assisting clients with high-asset property division. We routinely work with clients who have extensive stock holdings, complex pension and retirement plans, closely held businesses, multiple real estate investments and more.

In all property division cases, Michigan courts will consider a number of factors when distributing marital assets. These include:

  • The length of the marriage

  • The contributions of each spouse to the marital estate

  • The age and health of each spouse

  • The life status of each party

  • The earning potential of each party based on education, training, past work experience and employment opportunities

  • Each party's past relations and conduct

  • General principles of equity


Dividing marital assets can be stressful and complicated, particularly if the parties involved have substantial assets and a high net worth.

The experienced Macomb / Oakland County attorneys at Mellin Robinson, P.C., in Sterling Heights, Michigan, have the training, know-how and experience to assist individuals with high-asset property division in divorce. We work with appraisers, forensic accountants, business valuators, tax professionals, pension valuators, financial planners and other specialists to gain a full understanding and true value of the marital estate.

Our legal team's collaborative approach to every case means our clients receive more than 30 years of cumulative experience. Contact us to schedule a complimentary consultation.

Once we have established the value of the marital property to be divided, we develop a strategy to protect our clients' financial interests and ensure that they begin their post-divorce life in the best possible position financially.


Our clients' marital assets include a wide range of complex holdings, including:

  • Pensions and retirement plans

  • The contributions of each spouse to the marital estatePartnerships, professional memberships or practices

  • Closely held businesses

  • Stock options and corporate profit-sharing plans

  • Investment real estate such as commercial buildings or apartment

  • Second homes, cabins up north or undeveloped property

We strive to reach agreement on property division through negotiation rather than litigation. Generally, both parties in divorce are more satisfied with the outcome when they retain control over the final decisions rather than placing these decisions in the hands of a family court judge. If an agreement cannot be reached through negotiation with parties and lawyers, then the court is likely to require the parties to enlist the services of a neutral mediator.

Of course, not all disputes can be resolved without litigation. Our lawyers are trial-tested and always advocate aggressively for our clients, whether it is in negotiations or in court.

We welcome the opportunity to answer your questions and recommend the best course of action. We will review your situation, provide a straightforward assessment and recommend the best course of action.


Unlike child support, which follows rigid guidelines that are set by the state, spousal support in Michigan is awarded on a case-by-case basis and does not adhere to a specific formula. Spousal support is not ordered in every case. The purpose of spousal support, which is also referred to as alimony, is to help a spouse who may not have sufficient income maintain a certain standard of living while he or she becomes more self-sufficient following divorce.

As with property division and other issues that must be resolved in divorce, if both parties can reach agreement on spousal support it can be submitted for court approval and most often litigation can be avoided.

The family law attorneys at Mellin Robinson, P.C., in Sterling Heights protect our clients' rights regarding spousal support. Whether you expect to receive spousal support or you will likely make spousal support payments, it is important to enlist the services of an experienced Michigan spousal support attorney early in the process.

If you are not receiving court-ordered spousal support, we can take legal action to enforce those payments. This may include wage garnishment, revocation of a driver's license or interception of tax refunds.


The court considers a number of factors when determining the amount and duration of spousal support, including, but not limited to:

  • The length of the marriage

  • Each party's age and health

  • The needs of each spouse

  • Each party's ability to earn an income

  • The ability of each spouse to pay alimony

  • Each spouse's assets, including property awarded as part of the divorce

  • The couple's standard of living during the marriage

  • Whether either spouse was at fault in the breakdown of the marriage

  • General principles of equity


Court-ordered spousal support can be modified if warranted by significant material changes in either party's situation. This may include remarriage of the alimony recipient, job loss or reduction in pay for either party, or prolonged illness or injury that prevents one party from earning a full-time salary or results in extensive medical costs. Often, parties who reach agreements on spousal support waive their right to have it modified.

Whether you expect to receive spousal support or pay it, we will advocate for you and your best interests. Contact us to schedule a complimentary consultation with a Sterling Heights spousal support lawyer. We can answer your questions and provide a straightforward assessment. We work with clients throughout Oakland County, Macomb County, Wayne County, and beyond.

What is your legal issue?

Contact our family lawyers for a free virtual constultation.

What is your legal issue?

Contact our family lawyers for a free virtual constultation.

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Mellin Robinson, P.C. provides you with the best divorce attorney, divorce lawyer and family law attorney we service Birmingham, Clawson, Oakland County, Rochester, Royal Oak, Shelby, Romeo, Sterling Heights, Washington Township, and Troy Michigan as well as surrounding areas.

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