Children of Divorce: Breaking the Resistance and Refusal Dynamic

Continuing Legal Education Topic Parental Alienation is a hot Family Law topic. There is heightened awareness and increased repercussions for parents guilty of intentionally turning their kids against the other parent. With this increased attention to alienation, there is also recognition of the slippery slope pattern of rejection of a parent labeled RRD (Resistance, Refusal Dynamic). Experienced Livingston County Child Custody Attorney Kathryn Wayne-Spindler recently attended a Family Law Continuing Legal Education seminar where Hon. T.J. Ackert of the 17th Circuit Court Grand Rapids; Ben Burgess of  Parmelee and Associates in Grand Haven; and Connie R. Thacker of Thacker Sleight Continue Reading…

Established Custodial Environment Factors in Custody Decision

When challenging custodial arrangements, the courts will consider not only the 12 Best-Interest Factors but the existence of an Established Custodial Environment as well. Established Custodial Environment Important in Custody Fight In any custody challenge, the courts will first look to see if there is proper cause for seeking a change. The proposed custody change must be shown to not just be good for the child but sufficiently beneficial to warrant disrupting the existing situation. In establishing proper cause to revisit custody arrangements, according to M.C.L.A. 722.23(a-l), 722.27(1)(c), the relevant facts “must be of a magnitude to have a significant Continue Reading…

Parental Alienation Damages Kids

News coverage of the highly-publicized case of three Detroit-area children sent to Children’s Home after refusing to have lunch with their estranged father quieted when the children went to camp. But the intense controversy surrounding the case highlights the issue of Parental Alienation. “Parental alienation is a very real and very serious problem in highly-contentious co-parenting situations,” Michigan Family Law Attorney Kathryn Wayne-Spindler pointed out, “anytime one parent speaks ill of or encourages the children to avoid the other parent it influences all the relationships negatively.” In most situations, parental alienation begins with snide remarks or underhanded accusations meant to Continue Reading…

Drinking and Divorce Don’t Mix

Divorce can be a tough time emotionally, socially, financially and legally. And it can be tempting when going through stressful times, to turn to a relaxing glass of wine before bed or enjoy a night out with friends. However, attorneys counsel caution with alcohol consumption during contentious legal proceedings. There are many reasons drinking and divorce don’t mix. First, alcohol exaggerates the uncertainty of the current life drama. Legal proceedings can seem completely out of the client’s hands. “The court system can be overwhelming and intimidating for clients so they are dependent on me to guide them through,” says family Continue Reading…