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Michigan Divorce Laws

Just as there are statutory restrictions on marriage, so too are there for divorce. State laws establish certain requirements for divorce. While all states now allow for some sort of "no-fault" divorce, which means neither party must be at fault for the failure of the marriage, parties still must state the official grounds for divorce in court documents. Michigan's divorce laws are not much different than those in other states, although at least one party must have lived in Michigan for 180 days prior to the divorce filing.

This article provides a general overview of divorce laws in the state of Michigan.

Michigan Divorce Laws

The following table and links will help you better understand Michigan's divorce laws, and divorce in general.

Code Section

§ 552.1 et seq. of the Michigan Compiled Laws

Residency Requirements

One party must have resided in Michigan for 180 days before filing and one party has resided in the county where the complaint is filed for 10 days immediately preceding filing except in certain situations

Waiting Period


'No-Fault' Grounds for Divorce

Irretrievable breakdown

Defenses to a Divorce Filing


Other Grounds for Divorce


Note: State laws are always subject to change through the passage of new legislation, rulings in the higher courts (including federal decisions), ballot initiatives, and other means. While we strive to provide the most current information available, please consult an attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.

No-Fault Divorce Laws

All states, including Michigan, allow for a “no-fault" divorce. A no-fault divorce means that you do not need to prove that your spouse was “at fault," or did anything wrong. Instead, you just have to provide any reason that the state honors for the divorce. Under Michigan divorce law, the reason is that the marriage has suffered an “irretrievable breakdown," which is merely a legal way of saying that you and your spouse do not get along and you cannot repair your marital relationship. Michigan also has alternatives to the standard divorce, such as an annulment or legal separation.

Michigan Custody Laws

If you and your spouse have any children together, you should be aware of how Michigan child custody laws work, as well as Michigan laws pertaining to child support guidelines and child support enforcement. Also, if you have been a victim of domestic violence, the state of Michigan has resources available to you. You can also do more of your own research by visiting FindLaw's Divorce section for more articles and information.

Need Help with a Michigan Divorce? Contact an Attorney

Navigating the divorce process can be extremely difficult, both emotionally and legally. If you have children together, the process will be that much more complicated. You may find that speaking with a legal professional about your case can make things easier.

Get in touch with a Michigan divorce attorney today.

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