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Updates in Michigan Family Law Updates in Michigan Family Law

Updates in Michigan Family Law is a blawg written by Traverse City, Michigan family lawyer Jeanne M. Hannah. Jeanne explores developing Michigan law, and also the following topics of interest: divorce, custody, child support, paternity, domestic abuse, and adoption issues.\r\n\r\n

Post Frequency: 2.3/day

Last Entry: October 23, 2014 at 16:05:18

Recent Entries: 717

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Michigan Adoption Subsidies | New, Time-limited Rights for Adoptive Parents

Posted on October 23, 2014
The Michigan Legislature has enacted Public Act 308 of 2014. It is effective immediately. The new law allows adoptive parents of foster children with certain health conditions an additional way to receive adoption assistance. However, there is only a brief window in time for adoptive parents who have an adoption assistance agreement signed and in effect before January 1, 2015 to obtain this assistance.

New Form | Affidavit of Parentage

Posted on October 14, 2014
Parentage may be established at the time of birth or later when the mother and father of the child execute an affidavit of parentage. The form for this was updated in October 2013--more than a year after the enactment of the Revocation of Parentage Act.

Domestic Violence Danger | Trolling Lawyers

Posted on October 05, 2014
When lawyers pay to obtain information about recently filed divorce cases and send a letter soliciting contact with the defendant without regard to whether he or she knows about the filing and without regard as to whether a victim of domestic violence is safe, the party filing the divorce may be at risk for domestic violence...

In Re AJR | Michigan Supreme Court Ruling on Step-Parent Adoptions

Posted on September 25, 2014
The Michigan Supreme Court has finally handed down its decision in In Re AJR--a step-parent adoption case. According the the supreme court, the constitutional rights of a noncustodial parent ["NCP"] who has joint legal custody trump the right of a child or children to live in an intact family despite the failure that NCP to pay regular and substantial support and to maintain a regular and substantial parent-child relationship in the two years prior to filing of the step-parent adoption petition.

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Disorder in the Court | A Custody Hearing Gone Bad

Posted on September 23, 2014
Internet coverage of a Family Court hearing in Durham, North Carolina has garnered only 17,000 views on YouTube. (How did this courtroom video get posted to YouTube?) Those views, in my opinion, are hardly sufficient. Hopefully, the North Carolina Judicial...

Gmail Accounts Compromised by Russian Hackers | How to Fix This

Posted on September 11, 2014
Two lawyers on the State Bar of Michigan Family Law Listserv alerted members to a serious problem with Gmail today. This news and their advice is something I want to pass along to my readers. Email security is always imperative, especially given how often documents with sensitive information are exchanged by a lawyer and client.

Post-nuptial Agreement Unenforceable | Against Public Policy

Posted on August 27, 2014
An Illinois appellate court affirmed a trial court ruling that a postnuptial agreement was unenforceable as against public policy where the agreement gave a third party ?counselor? sole power to determine custody and other issues including property and support...

Young Parents Struggle with Computerized Work Scheduling

Posted on August 25, 2014
The New York Times a typical last-minute scramble, Jannette Navarro, a 22-year-old Starbucks barista and single mother, scraped together a plan for surviving the month of July without setting off family or financial disaster.

College Programs Available for Young Adults with Intellectual Challenges

Posted on August 24, 2014
Over 200 United States universities have a program for people with intellectual disabilities, but the admissions are highly competitive. Every year more than one hundred people apply for fewer than 10 openings.

Mother's Refusal to Facilitate Relationship with Dad Leads to Loss of Custody

Posted on August 07, 2014
A parent's effort to destroy the children's relationship with the other parent shows that the father went from supervised parenting time to sole legal and primary physical custody--with a relocation to Arkansas. The mother was allowed parenting time one weekend per month to be exercised in Arkansas.

In Memoriam: John Mills, Esteemed Colleague

Posted on July 27, 2014
John Mills, skilled family lawyer and mediator, beloved family member of our Family Law Section's member Evelyn Redmond, passed away yesterday, July 26, 2014. Richard Victor and Scott Bassett, two members of the jass band known as "The Bare Assets," have uploaded some video and audio files of performances.

Networking | Essential for the Successful Lawyer

Posted on July 21, 2014
Conferences are important and are a great place to make face-to-face contact with other lawyers who may refer work to you.

New Revocation of Parentage Act | What New Rights are Created?

Posted on July 19, 2014
On June 12, 2012, Public Act 159 of 2012 because effective as law in Michigan regarding the revocation of parentage by various persons given standing and under certain terms and conditions.

Protecting a Client's Confidential Information

Posted on July 18, 2014
I never (and I mean never) blind copy a client on email correspondence to opposing counsel. The danger is to high that a client may accidentally hit "Reply All" when commenting on the content of the email. If that happens, then the client's confidential attorney-client communication will be sent to opposing counsel...

Child Developmental Stages & Parenting Time Plans

Posted on July 16, 2014
My favorite resource for developing a parenting time plan that is developmentally sensitive is "Planning for Parenting Time: Arizona's Guide for Parents Living Apart." Arizona encourages parents to develop their own parenting time plan and, in the process of doing that, to consider the developmental needs of their children.

Dads Matter: Dads are Indispensible

Posted on July 15, 2014
Dads Matter: Dads are Indispensible. So says the author of a new book titled "What Science Is Telling Us About the Parent We've Overlooked" by Paul Raeburn.

?Good to Go? (and Return!) Part 3: Planning and Prevention

Posted on July 07, 2014
This article by Mark E. Sullivan concludes a three-part series about child custody and deployment issues with a prescription for avoiding disaster by crafting the court?s custody order with an eye to the future and a plan for who gets custody when the military member is absent.

?Good to Go? (and Return!) Part 2: The Sailor and the Perfect Storm

Posted on July 04, 2014
Despite good planning, many military custody cases hit a ?bump in the road? and overturn. Sometimes there?s good planning, and sometimes there?s NO planning. The results ? which usually involve the absence of the military custodian with no legal back-up custodian outside of the other parent ? lead to heartbreak, surprise, legal expenses, and sometimes child endangerment...

UPDATE: Time-out Called in Servicemember's Custody Action

Posted on June 23, 2014
While I was still "in press" on this Blog today, I missed an update to the Matthew Hindes' case. Matthew Catchick, a family law attorney in Southfield, Michigan, posted a link to a Detroit Free Press article on the State Bar of Michigan Family Law Listserv that is highly relevant to this case.

?Good to Go? (and Return!) Part 1: Unraveling the Rules

Posted on June 23, 2014
This is Part I of an article about military parents who have sole or primary custody, and how military absences can affect their custody orders and their military family care plans. The first section of the article will cover the ground rules for protecting and advising a military custodian as to mobilization, sea duty, deployments, and other military absences.

Servicemember Left Child with Step-Mother & Now Threatened with Contempt / Loss of Custody

Posted on June 23, 2014
Matthew Hindes, a father and U.S. Navy sailor on active duty and stationed on a submarine in the Pacific Ocean has been ordered by a Michigan judge to appear in court or he could lose custody of his daughter, and be arrested for contempt. Hindes requested a stay of the hearing for 90 days under the "Servicemembers Civil Relief Act," cited also by his commanders...

Legal Writing in Plain English

Posted on June 13, 2014
For the family lawyers who read my blog, here's a hat tip to Bryan A. Garner, writing in the ABA Journal on the topic of how important it is to pay attention to detail when drafting motions and briefs to be submitted to a court.

Access to Wayne County, MI Civil Status Conference Scheduling Orders

Posted on May 22, 2014
The 3rd Judicial Circuit has developed a new way for you to access the Civil Status Conference Scheduling Orders through the Public Case Search function on the 3rdcc.org website.

HIPPA Authorization | A Fillable PDF Form

Posted on May 20, 2014
See Jeanne's Toolbox for a splendid HIPPA Authorization form. It's a PDF fillable form.

Celebration! Practical and Humorous Advice for Practicing Lawyers

Posted on May 19, 2014
Judge Kozinski will teach you how to lose an appeal. Titled ?The Wrong Stuff,? here?s Judge Kozinski?s lecture delivered at Brigham Young University Reuben Clark School of Law on January 21, 1992.

Google to Remove Links to "Embarrassing Personal Information"

Posted on May 13, 2014
The European Union's highest court decided on Tuesday that Google must allow users of its search engine a right to delete links about themselves in some cases. This would include removal of links to legal records.

When Older Folks Cohabit--Protecting Assets & Social Security

Posted on April 27, 2014
OlderSome older couples who cohabit rather than marry reach that decisionin order to protect their children?s inheritances. Others decide against marriage in order to avoid the risk of having to cover long-term care and other medical costs often incurred by the elderly...

Bitter Litigant Trashes Divorce Lawyers | Fair Indictment?

Posted on March 21, 2014
Divorce Corp purports to expose a "corrupt" system. "Divorce Corp" is a "documentary." Joseph Sorge was pretty steamed after a trial court judge ordered him to pay his ex-wife's attorney fees in a post-judgment child support modification. Sorge was ordered to pay $200,000 in legal fees for his ex-wife's attorney during and after a bitter child support modification motion...

Post-judgment Custody Modification

Posted on March 19, 2014
In this digital age, letting loose with digital messages (emails, text messages) or even letters disseminating information to third parties happens far too often in custody and parenting time matters. When are they going to learn? Facebook, MySpace and other intrusions upon privacy ...

International Child Abduction | 20/20 Report - Mother Abducts Two Boys

Posted on March 12, 2014
In a gripping report, NBC's 20/20 documents the abduction of two American children from the US to Slovakia. The children were born in American during the mother's marriages to two different men. One of the fathers successfully used social media to help get information who were located in France.

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