What is abandonment and how does it apply in a divorce case? This question comes up quite frequently in our discussions with men who are considering divorce. In fact, it comes up way more than it should considering how infrequently it is actually an issue. The reality is that abandonment is almost never something you will need to be worried about when you are considering a divorce.

In Michigan, abandonment is more than leaving a child alone and unsupervised. It is defined as the custodial parent or guardian leaving a child because they do not want to or cannot care for the child’s health and welfare. Abandonment could also be leaving the child in the care of a person or an agency who is not willing to assume responsibility for the child. Abandonment is NOT moving out of your house or leaving the children with your wife.

Abandonment is more so a very extreme type of abuse or neglect situations, and not something you should be worried about at the beginning stages of a divorce or custody case. There are many reasons not to move out of the house when you have minor children, but abandonment is not one of them. You would want to avoid moving out until you have a definite plan and agreement with your wife, or the mother of your children, about custody, parenting time, support and payment of the bills. As usual, don’t allow co-workers or friends to cause you to panic. If you have concerns about what you should be doing at the early stages of a divorce or custody case, give ADAM a call. We can help.