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Frequently Asked Questions

My spouse has served me with divorce papers, how long do I have to respond?
  If you have been served with a summons, you have 21 days to respond if the summons was personally served or 28 days if the summons was mailed.  Failure to do so may result in a default being entered on your behalf.

What is the difference between a divorce and an annulment?
  A divorce is the dissolution of a marriage, while an annulment is a declaration that the marriage is null and void.

How much does it cost to file for divorce?
  A filing fee of $150 is charged if no minor children are involved.  If minor children are involved, the filing fee is $180.

How much does it cost to get divorced?
  The cost of a divorce can vary greatly depending on the circumstances of the case.  Typically speaking, a simple uncontested divorce  ranges from $1,200 - $1,500 and includes all filing fees, while a contested divorce may range from $5,000.00 - $30,000.00 depending on the time spent on your file and the need for any expert witnesses.

Typically how long does the entire divorce proceeding take?
  The time it takes for a divorce proceeding can vary greatly.  If a case is uncontested and without minor children, it may take as little 60 days from the date of filing, while a contested case can last an undetermined amount of time.

My spouse and I have been separated and living in separate locations, where do the divorce proceedings take place?
  All proceedings occur in jurisdiction in which the case was started.

If an annulment of a marriage is possible, what are the advantages and disadvantages of it?
  Please refer to Divorce vs. Annulment in the About Divorce Section.

I am looking into seeking a divorce from my spouse, on what grounds do I have the option to seek one.
  Michigan is known as a “no fault” divorce state.  However the words “no fault” may be misleading.  If the parties reach a final settlement on all issues, fault is not a factor.  If there is a dispute as to alimony, property, support, visitations, or custody, fault may become an active ingredient in resolving these issues.

My spouse is seeking custody of our children.  What recourse do I have in seeking custody?
  Each case is unique in its own; please contact Golden & Jernigan to schedule a consultation to discuss your options.

In what jurisdictions will Golden & Jernigan handle cases?
  Golden & Jernigan will take cases in following counties: Kent, Ottawa, Ionia, & Montcalm.

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