The Facilitative and Information Gathering Conference (FIGC) is a court
resource created with the goal of providing parents with a temporary
Order regarding issues of custody, parenting time, and child support. An FIGC may be requested by either party or ordered by the Court.
If requesting an FICG, please use these forms:
forms are filed at the Livingston County Circuit Court Clerk's Office
with transmittal to the Friend of the Court Office for
Upon receipt of the request for an FICG and the 1201-D form, the parties and/or attorneys are notified of a date to appear.
Please note that there must be proof of service filed with
the Circuit Court Clerk's Office of the initial complaint for divorce or
other domestic relations action prior to an EIC being scheduled.
Generally, once a request for an FIGC is received, along with a
completed 1201-D form and there is a proof of service on file at the
Clerk's Office, an FIGC will be scheduled within two weeks. The FIGC is
conducted by a conciliator, who is an attorney trained in the
conciliation process. Prior to the FIGC, the conciliator will send the
parties and/or attorneys a letter which includes a financial statement
and a domestic violence screening form which must be filled out prior to
the FIGC conference. These forms can be viewed here:
Parents are asked to bring in the following documents for the FIGC:
- Picture of their child(ren)
- Income information (pay stubs and income tax information) including insurance and day care costs
regarding other children they may have. The FIGC is not mediation and
the information discussed is not considered confidential.
The FIGC is conducted in a conference room at the Friend of the Court. Both
attorneys can be present with the parties. If both parties have
attorneys, the conciliator will meet with the attorneys first. If there
is only one attorney or neither party has an attorney, then the
conference begins upon all parties being present. If there is a Personal
Protection Order (PPO) or other type of no contact order, then the
interviews are conducted separately. When there are attorneys, both
attorneys are present for each interview.
The FIGC consists of the
parties and/or their attorneys sitting together in an effort to come to
a consensus. The focus of the meeting is to discuss how parenting time
for each parent should be conducted during the separation and/or
divorce process. The goal is to encourage parents to work together for
the sake of their child(ren) and to make parenting time arrangements
that are in the best interests of their child(ren). Parties discuss
their concerns and their schedules. They talk about the goals for their
child(ren). In this non-confrontational atmosphere, the parties are
encouraged to develop a schedule which meets their needs and those of
their child(ren). The conciliator may make suggestions in order to
facilitate the parties' agreement. These suggestions are based on
developmentally age appropriate parenting time guidelines.
temporary child support order is requested, the number of overnights
that the child(ren) spend with each party and the earnings of each party
are evaluated. The Michigan Child Support Guidelines are used to assist
with setting a child support amount. If there is a request, the parties
may return for a second conciliation. Conference calls with attorneys
are also conducted if necessary.
Upon the conclusion of the FIGC,
the conciliator will prepare a report and recommended Order regarding
the issues discussed. Generally, this would be a temporary Order for
custody, parenting time, and child support. Often, the parties and/or
their attorneys agree and this becomes a Consent Order. If the parties
and/or their attorneys do not agree, then the conciliator sends copies
of the report and recommended Order to the parties and/or attorneys and
also to the assigned judge. The judge reviews the report and proposed
Order and, if in agreement, will sign the Order. The Order takes effect
immediately, although the parties and/or their attorneys will have 21
days from which to file an objection. The objection hearing will be
heard before a domestic relations referee or a judge.
the FIGC process can be a useful resource for parents in establishing
temporary Orders that are based upon the best interests of their