Custody and Parenting Time Information
NEW CASE INTERVIEWS
All new divorce and custody cases are referred to the Friend of the Court for an initial new case interview to address the issues of custody, parenting time, and child support. Support and custody cases initiated in the prosecutor's office are sometimes referred to the Friend of the Court as well. Our investigator/mediator will meet with you and the other parent to help you reach an agreement. If you are able to reach an agreement, the investigator/mediator will help you put your agreement into the form of an order.
If you are unable to agree, the investigator/mediator will prepare a recommendation that reflects the best interests of your child(ren), based on the circumstances of your case, and the information provided to the Friend of the Court. That recommendation will be filed with the Court and may be considered by the Court in continuing litigation.
MODIFICATION OF CUSTODY/PARENTING TIME ORDERS
Often times, modifying custody/parenting time orders can be a complicated issue because certain proofs must be made to the court before the court will modify a custody/parenting time order. You may wish to discuss this issue with an attorney to determine how best to proceed. Please remember Friend of the Court Staff cannot give legal advice.
If parties have reached an agreement regarding a modification to their custody/parenting time order, they may enter into a consent agreement.
If parties have attempted to privately resolve their issues but are unable to do so, Friend of the Court may be able to help. Parties may contact Friend of the Court to set up mediation with our investigator/mediator. At this meeting, parties will be given an opportunity to discuss their respective issues in an attempt to reach an agreement. Friend of the Court will only schedule a joint meeting if BOTH parties are willing to attend.
ENFORCEMENT OF PARENTING TIME ORDERS
Friend of the Court assists parties in enforcing parenting time orders only through written request. If you have a court order for parenting time and the other party is not complying with the court’s order, you may file a Parenting Time Compliant. Please remember that Friend of the Court can only enforce written court orders. Friend of the Court cannot enforce private agreements made by the parties.
PARENT EDUCATION PROGRAM
OnlineParentingPrograms.com is dedicated to serving parents and strengthening skills for positive future behavior. These online classes help parents strengthen conflict skills to come up with personal strategies for solving problems and focuses protecting children from as their family reorganizes in new ways. Click the link to find out more about OnlineParentingPrograms.com
POLICYBack to Top
PUBLIC ACT 600 OF 2012
Public Act 600 of 2012 amended MCL 722.27a to require that parenting time orders contain a prohibition on exercising parenting time in a nation that is not a party to the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction unless both parents provide the court with written consent to allow a parent to exercise parenting time in such a country.
Countries that have signed the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of Child Abduction can be found here:
For information on travel to specific countries, look here: http://www.travel.state.gov/abduction/country/country_3781.html
RESOURCESBack to Top
"Parents who are separated, divorced, or were never together in the first place must still communicate with each other regarding their children. Good communication is the key to a positive co-parenting environment."*
Even so, some parents struggle with healthy interaction.
https://talkingparents.com/home* is an option for those families and is a free web-based service. It may be especially effective for high-conflict situations - especially those involving domestic violence.
Talking Parents replaces e-mail, text-messaging, and social networking sites as methods of communicating with the other parent. Once messages are composed and sent, they cannot be modified or deleted, maintaining an accurate record between parties. Conversations are archived so they may be printed, if necessary, for review by a third party.Back to Top
ABUSE AND NEGLECT
Reporting Abuse & Neglect in the State of Michigan
Anyone, including a child, who suspects child abuse or neglect, can make a report by calling 855-444-3911.
You may also e-mail the Department of Human Services at DHS-CPS_CIGroup@michigan.gov or fax the form below to Centralized Intake for Abuse and Neglect at 616-977-1154, or 616-977-1158.
In addition, the Child Protection Law requires certain professionals to report suspected child abuse or neglect. Reports of suspected child abuse or neglect will either be:
- Assigned for investigation;
- Rejected; or
- Transferred to another agency for investigation, such as law enforcement or the Bureau of Child and Adult Licensing.
Reports must meet the following three criteria to be assigned for investigation:
- The alleged victim is under 18 years of age.
- The alleged perpetrator is a parent, legal guardian or other person responsible for the child's health and welfare.
- The allegations minimally meet the child abuse and neglect definitions in the Child Protection Law.
8:00 AM - 4:30 PM