Phoenix Divorce Lawyer

Divorce, or in legal terms, dissolution of marriage, can be a complicated and stressful process. Planning is of the utmost importance when filing for a divorce. An effective plan will accurately represent the needs of you and your spouse while keeping yours and your child’s best interests in mind. The Phoenix divorce attorneys at Gillespie, Shields, Durrant & Goldfarb will vigorously advocate on your behalf. In addition to fighting for your rights, our family law attorneys always strive to maintain civility between parties to achieve a peaceful dissolution.

Understanding the Differences in Arizona Divorce Laws

Divorce laws vary widely across all states. In Arizona, divorce grounds are primarily based on a no-fault clause. Either spouse can file for divorce on these grounds. It essentially declares that the marriage is irreconcilably broken. However, Arizona is also one of the three states that recognize covenant marriages.

If you are seeking dissolution from a covenant marriage, you can only file for divorce on specific grounds like adultery, drug abuse, abandonment, or a mutual agreement. Arizona has a residency requirement as well, which requires that at least one spouse has been a resident for longer than 90 days before filing for divorce. The attorneys at Gillespie, Shields, Durrant & Goldfarb have been practicing family law and divorce law in Phoenix, AZ since 1985. We understand the variations in state laws governing divorce and we will develop a strategy to get you the outcome you’re hoping to achieve.

Arizona Divorce Statistics

Since peaking in 1990 with a marriage rate of 10 per 1,000 people in Arizona, the rate has steadily declined down to 5.8 in 2014, according to the CDC. Following suit, Arizona’s divorce rate also peaked in 1990 at 6.9 per 1,000. However, it’s remained relatively stable throughout the 2000s, averaging around 4 per 1,000.

Below is a comparison of the marriage and divorce rates from 2014 between states with a similar population size (6 million) as Arizona. Indiana, however, does not keep track of divorces.

Source: CDC

Property Division in Phoenix, AZ

When it comes to dividing property, the process alone can seem daunting before even taking into account the various rules and regulations regarding property division. In Arizona, all property acquired during the marriage will be divided equally upon divorce. This is known as community property. Property refers to possessions, real estate, income, and debts. Any property acquired before the marriage will not be included as community property.

Uncontested versus contested divorces

An uncontested divorce proceeding is generally when both parties agree to resolve their differences amicably. Even if you and your spouse have decided to part as friends, it is still in your best interest to hire an experienced divorce law firm.

Our team uses a process known as discovery to assign a numerical value to your assets, including 401ks, stocks, bonds, savings and business investments. We can also uncover any hidden assets you may not be aware of. This way, we can create a fair and equitable agreement for you, and our lawyers will help keep the proceedings amicable.

Matters become significantly more complicated when members of a marriage cannot come to a mutual arrangement. When a divorce becomes contested, seek the help of a professional. In these cases, mediation or even arbitration may be necessary to achieve the outcome you want.

The more assets you jointly share, the more complicated your court proceedings can get. Our team of legal experts can help you secure the outcome you are looking for by advocating for you in every step of the process. Whenever possible, we work with opposing counsel to reach a civil agreement to save you the time, money and aggravation associated with taking a case to court.

If you and your spouse signed a prenuptial agreement, it can be hard to decipher the “legalese” and know if anyone violated it. Let our team of lawyers read over your agreements and determine how a premarital arrangement will play a part in your divorce proceedings.

Arizona Custody and Support Laws

The state of Arizona takes child custody and support very seriously. The custody ruling is based on the best interest of the child. If one of the parents has a history of drug use or any kind of criminal record, it will be very hard for that parent to gain custody. Alimony and child support guidelines factor in the income of both spouses, standard quality of life before the divorce, length of the marriage, and a number of other factors.

It is important to seek experienced legal counsel for matters of spousal and child support to be sure you have effective representation and get the amount of support you need. Although modifications to decrees can be made after the fact, they can be difficult to secure unless there are significant changes that warrant the modification.

Experienced Divorce attorneys in Phoenix, AZ

Dissolving a marriage is much more complicated than just disbanding the relationship. Without the help of an experienced attorney, it can be daunting to organize custody, support, property division, and any other individual circumstances. Our attorneys take the time to listen to all of your needs and create an effective plan for your divorce. We have experience in an array of family law concentrations and our strategies are collaborative and comprehensive. Our divorce attorneys work together to get you the best possible outcome, all while keeping your stress to a minimum.

Based out of Phoenix, AZ, we provide legal services encompassing family law, estate planning, elder law, business law, employment law, and catastrophic injuries. Our AVVO ratings and badges range from excellent to superb, and two of our team attorneys have received Martindale-Hubbell client recognition awards. We are committed to providing effective representation and undeniable value to our clients. We hope that you will contact us for any of your legal needs.