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Divorce is seldom an easy process. It often involves legal issues that may continue long after the divorce is finalized which can impact your family’s future. It is important to consult with an experienced family lawyer before you initiate divorce proceedings to find out how the law applies in your particular case.
If you are facing separation or divorce in Arizona, a Phoenix divorce lawyer at Mushkatel, Robbins & Becker, P.L.L.C., can help. You will find a calm, comfortable and competent environment at our firm, while our team of dedicated legal professionals will work hard to resolve your case.
Although there is no easy way to get through the dissolution of a marriage, an experienced divorce attorney can help. Contact us for sound legal guidance in the difficult decisions you will need to make.
A divorce, or “dissolution of marriage,” is a legal proceeding to end a marriage officially. In Arizona, the person who files for divorce is called the “petitioner,” and the other spouse is called the “respondent.”
In order to file a petition for divorce, a person or their spouse must have resided in Arizona for at least 90 days.
In a no-fault divorce state, the only reason needed to file for divorce is that at least one spouse believes the marriage is “irretrievably broken.”
If you file for divorce and your spouse wishes to prevent the divorce attempt, he or she may ask the court for a conciliation meeting or counseling. The divorce proceedings are postponed for up to 60 days for the meeting to take place. If the spouses do not agree to remain married after the meeting, the divorce will proceed.
Whether divorce is the answer to the current condition of your marriage is a matter only you and your spouse can decide. Before you file for divorce, speak to an experienced Phoenix divorce lawyer at Mushkatel, Robbins & Becker, P.L.L.C. You may also wish to consider the following questions, which may shed some light on your current situation and help you decide what your next steps should be:
The reasons a couple decides to divorce are as varied as the individuals involved in each marriage. Still, some problems are harder to resolve than others. For instance, if you feel that you or your children are in danger from your spouse, you should act immediately. Move to safety. Think about divorce only after the immediate danger has passed. If you do not feel unsafe but do feel as if the marriage is no longer working, you may wish to stay in your marital home while you work out your feelings and plans.
Some couples find themselves acting more like roommates than spouses long before one of them actually brings up divorce as an option. If you and your spouse are already separated in all but fact, it may be valuable to ask yourselves why you have not yet sought a formal divorce. Speaking to a marriage counselor may also be helpful, whether you ultimately decide to separate for good or to work on the marriage.
Many people hesitate to file for divorce because they are afraid of the unknown. Divorce means change. Changes can be frightening –particularly in marriages of long duration. An experienced counselor can help you weather the storm. Your attorney can provide advice and guidance as well.
As stated by the Maricopa County Superior Court, to file for divorce in Arizona, you or your spouse must have lived or been stationed in the state for at least 90 days before filing. The court also states that, if your divorce will involve matters concerning children, such as custody or child support, you should have resided with your children in Arizona for at least six months before filing for divorce. The state of Arizona must be the child’s primary residence if you are asking the judge to decide on child custody or support matters.
It is not necessary to have grounds for divorce in order to file for one in Arizona. Because Arizona is a no-fault divorce state, you do not need to prove that you are entitled to divorce because of your spouse’s actions. You only need to establish that the marriage is broken, and there is no chance that you and your spouse will get back together.
To obtain a divorce in Arizona, one spouse (called the Petitioner) files a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage in the Superior Court. A copy must be served on the other spouse (who is called the Respondent). The Respondent will have 20 days to respond if residing in Arizona and 30 days if residing out of state.
The parties may enter into a separation agreement before or after the divorce is filed in order to settle issues such as division of assets, spousal support, child support, custody and visitation. However, agreements between the parties concerning children are not necessarily binding on the court.
If the parties do not agree on issues such as child custody and support, spousal support or division of assets, they will need to request a hearing so a judge can decide these issues for them. After the hearing, or when the spouses enter an agreement on the terms of the divorce, the court will issue a Decree of Dissolution of Marriage. This decree will terminate the marriage and establish custody, parenting time, child support, spousal support and division of debts and property.
After the divorce is finalized, either spouse can take the other back to court to request modification to the terms of the divorce. Modification is often requested in matters such as child support, child custody and visitation.
The terms of a separation or divorce can have a significant impact on future circumstances for you and your children. An experienced family law attorney can help you to obtain a favorable outcome by:
The process of divorce can be a stressful and emotional experience that can have a significant impact on your life. A family law attorney at Mushkatel, Robbins & Becker, P.L.L.C., understands the difficulties you are facing. We are committed to helping you to seek the best possible outcome for your family and yourself. We have two locations in the Phoenix metro area for your convenience, contact us today to set up a free consultation in Sun City or Scottsdale. When you work with our firm, you get our skills, compassion and experience on your side.