The Friend Of The Court And The Divorce Process
The Friend of the Court is the arm of the Court that handles custody, child support and parenting time. The Friend of the Court immediately schedules their own mediation, known as a Conciliation Conference or Facilitative Information Gathering Conference, within a few weeks of the filing of the divorce. This may be scheduled and the parties notified even before the opposing party is served the Complaint. The Friend of the Court meets with the parties, without attorneys and explains some of the Court process. The Friend of the Court mediator will try to help the parties to reach an agreement about Custody, Parenting Time and Support.
If a parenting time agreement can be reached, both parties can sign the agreement, and that will become the Order of the Court. If one or both of the parties do not agree, then the mediator will issue a recommendation. The Judge will sign the recommendation into an Order. Either party then has 14 days to object to the recommendation and have a hearing to prove to the Judge why the recommendation is not correct. Sometimes the Court will change the recommendation or modify it, and sometimes the Court will just wait until the time of trial to adjust what was in the recommendation.
Learn how Tabono Law in Muskegon County can help you through the processes associated with parenting time and child support in your Michigan divorce. See also:
- Beginning a divorce
- Undertaking discovery and/or mediation
- Divorce settlement conferences and pretrial conferences, and trial
- Divorce settlement and judgment
Attorney Shon Cook is an experienced family law mediator who can guide clients in all phases of a divorce with a goal of protecting long-term best interests.