MICHIGAN'S EXPERT APPEAL LAWYERS-Call 7 Days-24 Hours: (517) 993-9555
Call 7 Days-24 Hours: (517) 993-9555
Divorce judgments, including custody orders, are usually final and appealable of right even though the trial court has continuing jurisdiction to modify certain provisions. However, the title does not control, and an order denominated a “judgment” may not meet the final order requirement. If the trial court issues a divorce judgment that indicates that there are outstanding issues to be decided, that judgment is not a final judgment subject to an appeal of right but rather an interlocutory order. Ordinarily, parties may not appeal consent judgments. However, a consent judgment may be appealed under certain circumstances.
Review of custody orders post divorce judgment is subject to MCL 722.28, which provides that the trial court’s decision will be affirmed unless the trial court made findings of fact against the great weight of the evidence or committed a palpable abuse of discretion or a clear legal error on a major issue. Under this standard, a reviewing court should not substitute its judgment on questions of fact unless the factual determination clearly preponderates in the opposite direction. A trial court’s findings must be independently supported or corroborated by the evidence on the record and thus amenable to an appeal. A trial court’s discretion is not unbridled; its ultimate decision must comport with the great weight of the evidence. A trial court does not have “unfettered discretion” over child custody matters.
The issue to be considered is whether a trial court properly operated within the statutory child support framework, including any deviation, is a question of law that is reviewed de novo. However, a trial court’s discretionary rulings that are permitted by statute or the Michigan Child Support Formula are reviewed for an abuse of discretion. A trial court abuses its discretion when it relies on a legally improper reason for departing from the Michigan Child Support Formula in establishing a parent’s child support obligation. A court’s factual findings made in determining the amount of support are reviewed for clear error.
If you want to appeal a child support order from a divorce or custody case, call today to speak with an appellate attorney.
When deciding whether to file an appeal, it is important to remember that reversal on matters other than legal errors are difficult to obtain. This is due in part to the fact that the court of appeals defers to the trial court in regard to its determination of witness credibility. The best chance for success on an appeal regarding divorce, custody, property, spousal support, child support, or attorney fees lies in establishing legal error.
In property cases, the most common areas for legal error are as follows:
In spousal support cases, the most common areas for legal error are as follows:
In child support matters, the most common areas for legal error are as follows:
In matters regarding attorney fees, the most common areas for legal error are as follows:
If you would like more information about appealing a decision for termination of parental rights, click below.
If you would like more information about appealing a change of custody evidentiary hearing decision, click below.
If you would like more information about appealing an award of alimony/spousal support, click below.
If you would like more information about appealing a parenting time custody order, click below.
If you would like more information about appealing an order for the division of property, retirement and assets, click below.
If you would like information about grandparent visitation rights, click below.
If you would like more information about nonmarital relationships (common law marriage) in Michigan, click below.
If you would like more information about a termination of parental rights case in Michigan, click below.
If you would like more information on how our expert attorneys will appeal a wrongfully issued Personal Protection Order (PPO), click below.
Click here for standard forms approved by the Michigan State Court Administrator's Office for divorce, custody and child support cases: https://courts.michigan.gov/Administration/SCAO/Forms/Pages/Domestic-Relations.aspx
Click here for links to the State of Michigan Divorce and Custody Laws: https://statelaws.findlaw.com/michigan-law/michigan-legal-requirements-for-divorce.html
Click here to search State of Michigan Court of Appeals and Supreme Court Opinions: https://courts.michigan.gov/opinions_orders/opinions_orders/Pages/default.aspx
Click here to review the Michigan Child Support Guidelines: https://courts.michigan.gov/Administration/SCAO/Resources/Documents/Publications/Manuals/focb/2017MCSF.pdf#page=1
Click here to calculate Child Support Payments according to the Michigan Child Support Guidelines: https://micase.state.mi.us/calculatorapp/public/welcome/load.html
Click here to order Birth, Death, Marriage and Divorce Records from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services: https://www.michigan.gov/mdhhs/0,5885,7-339-71551_4645---,00.html