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Family Law

Varnum takes care of protecting you, your children and your assets

Varnum’s Family Law Team is dedicated to achieving successful outcomes for individuals facing one of life’s most difficult circumstances. With over 100 years of combined experience, the Family Law Team produces results by bringing an entrepreneurial spirit to each client’s case.

Our goal is to assist clients in reaching fair settlements in an efficient and cost-effective manner. No matter the complexity of the issues involved, we provide our undivided attention to each client, regardless of their socioeconomic background. Our clients can be confident that if agreements cannot be reached, our Family Law Team will effectively and passionately represent their interests in the courtroom.

When you work with a Varnum attorney, you also receive the benefit of working with a large law firm that offers corporate, tax, employment and estate planning attorneys who can assist when experience in any of these areas is required. In matters where a difficult relationship exists between spouses, our clients receive the benefit of working with attorneys who have experience in high-conflict situations, mental health disorders and domestic abuse. Let Varnum be the law firm that takes care of protecting you, your children and your assets.


Divorce can be one of the most stressful events in a person’s life. Whether you are initiating the divorce or are the spouse being sued for divorce, it’s a time of considerable emotional upheaval. It is also a time when you will be called upon to make important decisions that will have lifelong effects on you and your family.

While information about marriage and family life is readily available from a variety of sources, divorce is almost always new territory for those involved. In addition, the “advice” that does exist is often not in your – or your family’s – best interest. For the best outcome, it is essential that you receive excellent legal advice. The divorce attorneys at Varnum are committed to providing you with attentive, personal service. We work passionately to help you achieve your objectives and guide you through this stressful process.

Varnum’s divorce attorneys also have significant experience in filing appeals with the Michigan Court of Appeals. We have argued appeals before Michigan Court of Appeals judges in Detroit, Lansing and Grand Rapids. Most importantly, Varnum divorce lawyers have a strong record of achieving successful outcomes for our clients at the appellate level.

With over 100 combined years of experience, we have a broad range of experience in all types of divorce situations and the matters surrounding them, and we provide you with the expertise you need for resolving emotionally and financially sensitive issues.

Child Custody

Child custody is often the most emotional and traumatic part of a divorce matter. Varnum attorneys are experienced in handling child custody disputes and are equipped to advocate for the best interest of you and your child.

Varnum’s family law attorneys are also adept at handling contested as well as agreed paternity, support and custody matters with discretion and skill.

Child Support

Child support is based mainly on the Child Support Formula Manual (the “Guidelines,” a formula relating to income and the number of overnights the child spends with each parent or, in some cases, a third party). The Varnum Family Law Team is experienced in using creative solutions to deal with complex payment and income issues.


Varnum’s Family Law Team is experienced in handling contested and uncontested stepparent and adult adoptions in counties throughout Michigan and can help guide you through the often-complicated process.

Mediators and Arbitrators

The Varnum Family Law Team includes trained and experienced mediators who can assist in resolving cases short of trial through facilitative mediation or evaluative mediation at any stage of a family law matter. Our mediators use their skills as negotiators and seasoned litigators to diligently and creatively help the parties come to a resolution of their disputes. We are experienced in handling matters that may involve a history of domestic violence as well as mental health issues. Varnum’s trained mediators have a proven track record of resolving disputes, thereby avoiding the need to attend trial.

Our team can also assist as neutral arbitrators for family law disputes. In divorce arbitration, a neutral, third-party arbitrator who is an expert in divorce law hears both sides of the dispute and determines the best way to settle some, if not all, of the matters between a couple ending their marriage. This may include the division and possession of property, division of retirement accounts and allocation of liabilities.

Spousal Support

Varnum’s Family Law Team regularly negotiates innovative and creative ways of structuring a spousal support award for both the payor of spousal support and the recipient, considering the current tax consequences and restrictions of such an award, discounting and buyouts.

Business Valuations

Oftentimes a business is the most important asset within an estate, and it’s important to preserve this asset to establish a legacy for future generations. Varnum’s Family Law Team has extensive training and experience ensuring that closely held businesses are properly valued. We have worked with both small and large, private and publicly held businesses in industries including tool and die, medical practices, dental practices, farming operations, car dealerships and more.

From the moment a business valuation expert is retained, Varnum lawyers work closely with our clients and the retained business valuation expert until completion of the reports is finalized. We respect your investment and treat these assets with the care and sensitivity they deserve.

Fraud and Hidden Assets

Varnum’s Family Law Team is dedicated to uncovering all assets that have accumulated during a marriage so that our clients receive an equitable distribution of the estate. We are members of the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, an organization committed to training individuals to detect and investigate fraud. Our Family Law Team has extensive experience and proven success in recovering undisclosed assets for clients, whether the spouse’s conduct is purposeful or not. Varnum’s Family Law Team works to ensure that your financial security is protected.

“I was very pleased with the professionalism and compassion with which my case was handled.”

Client, US News – Best Lawyers® Best Law Firms

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