Divorce and Family Law

Mark E. Crane, PLLC represents clients in family law matters. We regularly practice before the Family Division Judges of the Oakland, Macomb, Wayne, Lapeer, Washtenaw, and Genesee County Circuit Courts. We have extensive experience with the following types of family law matters:
  • Divorce
  • Separate Maintenance (Legal Separation)
  • Annulment
  • Paternity
  • Custody
  • Parenting Time (Visitation)
  • Grandparenting Time
  • Child Support
  • Spousal Support (Alimony)
  • Property Division
  • Step-Parent Adoption
  • Change of Minor Children's Domicile
  • Prenuptial Agreements
  • Postnuptial Agreements
  • Domestic Violence and Personal Protection Orders
Both emotionally and financially, a divorce is the single most stressful event that most people will face during their lifetimes. Family law cases are filled with conflicting pressures and a great deal of anxiety about the future.

In divorce cases, the best way to avoid trial is to prepare for trial. Fair and equitable settlements in divorce cases result from thorough and diligent preparation and effective negotiation. If you are facing a divorce, you need a strong and experienced attorney in your corner. We have handled hundreds of litigation matters up to and through trial. We are familiar with the trial process and comfortable in the courtroom. We believe that, in divorce cases, the best decisions concerning your children and your finances are those made by you and your spouse, rather than by a third-party decision maker who does not know you or your family. Accordingly, we will do everything within our power to help you to resolve your divorce case at the negotiation table rather than at the courthouse. When that is not possible, however, we have the experience and skills necessary to provide thorough and aggressive representation at trial.

Whether your case involves heavily contested custody issues, challenging property division issues, a closely-held or family-owned business, a highly-compensated executive or professional, or a relatively modest marital estate, we will provide you with skilled, compassionate and cost-effective representation.

Probate Administration and Litigation

Probate is the legal process that takes place when a deceased person's estate needs to be distributed with the assistance of the Probate Court, generally because there was no estate planning or incomplete planning prior to the individual's death. Probate courts handle cases involving:
  • Administration of Trusts and Estates
  • Will Contests and Disputes Between Heirs
  • Guardianships (Minors and Incapacitated Adults)
  • Conservatorships
  • Power of Attorney Disputes
  • Breach of Fiduciary Duty Claims Against Trustees and Personal Representatives
We have over twenty years of experience handling probate litigation matters. We have successfully handled contested probate cases up to and through trial. Mark Crane is regularly appointed by the Oakland County Probate Court to serve as Guardian Ad Litem in guardianship and conservatorship cases involving minors and incapacitated adults.

Business Litigation

Mark E. Crane began handling business litigation matters immediately following his graduation from law school. Over the years, the attorneys at Mark E. Crane, PLLC have added other areas to their practice, with an emphasis on family law matters. However, they have never lost their grounding as business lawyers and continue to be, first and foremost, lawyers for business people. The firm handles business matters involving:
  • Partnership Disputes and Break-ups
  • Contract Disputes
  • Corporate and LLC Dissolutions
  • Real Estate Disputes
  • Sales Commission Claims
  • Manufacturer's Representative Claims
  • Business Interference and Non-Compete Claims
  • Employment Claims
  • Disputes Arising Out of the Sale or Purchase of a Business
  • Insurance Claims and Disputes
  • Property Tax Litigation
As is the case with family law matters, the key to success in business litigation is preparation. What happens during a court hearing is dictated, in large part, by the research, discovery, investigation and preparation that take place beforehand. With over twenty years of business litigation experience, the attorneys at Mark E. Crane, PLLC know how to properly prepare your case for trial and how to properly position your case in order to negotiate a fair and reasonable settlement.


Mark E. Crane, PLLC represents clients in appeals in both family law and business cases. The Michigan Court Rules impose strict directives with regards to the timing and content of an appeal to the Michigan Court of Appeals or the Michigan Supreme Court. Appellate work requires attention to details and skillful research and writing. We have handled appellate cases for over fifteen years.

Drunk Driving and License Restoration

Fines. Court Costs. Probation. Jail. Michigan courts impose heavy penalties for drinking and driving. For most people arrested for drunk driving, however, the single greatest threat is the potential loss of a driver's license. Given the lack of public transportation in southeast Michigan, the loss of a driver's license can be devastating and often leads to the loss of a job or the inability to run a business or attend school.

If you have been arrested for OWI (DUI/OUIL) or any other alcohol-related offense, it is imperative that you act quickly. You need aggressive, thorough and experienced legal representation. Do not retain any attorney who tells you, during your first telephone call or meeting, that your only option is to "plea bargain" and hope for the best. At Mark E. Crane, PLLC, we approach every new drunk driving case as though it will be taken to trial. We obtain a thorough and detailed history from you and we order your driving record. We obtain, review and analyze the police report, arrest videos and Datamaster/Breathalyzer reports, looking for possible legal defenses or procedural defects. We evaluate the manner in which the traffic stop and arrest were handled, looking for possible grounds for dismissal of the charges. We explore every possible avenue of defense available to you. Ultimately, a plea to a lesser offense may be the best available option for you. In order for you to be able to make an informed and responsible decision, however, your attorney must first perform a great deal of investigation and background work. Any attorney who does not do so is not adequately representing his or her client.

In addition to defending drunk driving matters at the District Court level, Mark E. Crane, PLLC also handles license restoration matters before the Michigan Secretary of State's Driver License Appeal Division (DLAD). If your license has been revoked, you may be limited with respect to how often you can appear before the DLAD seeking restoration of your license. You carry the burden of proof at the license restoration hearing and must demonstrate, by clear and convincing evidence, that your alcohol problems are under control. We have handled license restoration matters for almost two decades. We have the skills and experience necessary to guide you past the procedural pitfalls in order to maximize your chances of success at your DLAD license restoration hearing.

Estate Planning

Estate planning enables you to clearly express what you would like to occur upon your death. Having your intentions laid out for your loved ones can avoid stress, confusion, potential conflict and heartache for your family. We tailor our estate plans to your family’s specific needs, we provide services which include:
  • Wills
  • Trusts
  • Estate & Gift Tax Planning
  • Nomination of Guardian to Serve After Your Death for Your Minor Children

Life Planning

It is important to express your desires for your medical care, finances and other areas of your life in the event you were to become incapacitated either on a short term or long term basis. Planning for these matters in advance will save your loved ones a great deal of struggle in trying to determine what you would have desired. Therefore, we provide our clients with:
  • Powers of Attorney (for financial decisions)
  • Patient Advocate Designations (for medical decisions)
  • HIPAA Waivers
  • Medical Record Release Forms

Elder Law

Complicated issues can arise related to the aging process. We understand that these issues can be extremely difficult and emotional. At Mark E. Crane, PLLC, we are here to alleviate some of the anxiety that comes along with these challenges. We assist you and your family with:
  • Government Benefits Eligibility, including Medicaid Planning
  • Long Term Care Issues
  • Guardianships
  • Conservatorships
  • Elder Abuse & Exploitation Advocacy

Special Needs Planning

Many parents of children with special needs live with one constant question running through their mind: “Who will take care of my child and see that his/her special needs are met, when I am gone?” At The Law Offices of Mark E. Crane, PLLC, we are here to counsel parents and families through tough decision-making and planning, while at the same time acting as aggressive advocates for the rights of individuals with disabilities. We help give parents peace of mind through the use of:
  • Special Needs Trusts
  • Government Benefits Eligibility & Advocacy
  • Assistance with Quality of Life Issues
| Home | Attorneys | Resources | Blog | Disclaimer | Directions | Contact |