How is Spousal Maintenance Determined?
Nothing is more difficult than predicting what a judge will decide is the appropriate spousal maintenance award on any given set of facts. This uncertainty can be traced to the statutory factors that a judge is compelled to consider to decide if a person is entitled to receive spousal maintenance and if so, the amount and duration of the award. The factors, as set forth in A.R.S. §25-319(B) and … Read More
Successfully Employing Mediation to Settle Issues in Your Divorce
Getting divorced can be both emotionally exhausting and financially devastating. Couples may consider mediation as one method to transverse through the dissolution of their marriage with less acrimony and potentially at lower cost to the divorcing couple.
We often attempt to resolve divorce cases through mediation and in most cases we achieve that goal. Generally, there are strategies that help … Read More
Why Arizona Business Owners Need a Premarital Agreement
Arizona is a community property state which means all property acquired by either spouse during the marriage is, by statute, presumed to be community property. The characterization of property as either sole and separate property or community property is established at the time the property is acquired. Accordingly, in divorces when one of the spouses is the owner of a business established prior to the marriage, … Read More
Use of a Jointly Engaged Valuation Expert in a Divorce: How to Make the Process Work
In recent years it has become more common for divorcing spouses to agree to jointly engage one expert to value the marital interest in a business or professional practice. While choosing one expert is not suitable for all situations, the potential benefits of using one expert include saving time in the process, reducing the cost of the valuation and increasing the possibility of negotiating a resolution … Read More
Does It Matter Who Files First in a Divorce Proceeding?
As far as the outcome is concerned, it should make no difference which party chooses to file the petition for divorce. However, one of the parties is able to control the process, the person filing (known as the Petitioner) is ultimately able to control the initial portion of their dissolution case.
Advantages of Being the Petitioner
Firstly, at any proceeding before the court, the Petitioner has the first … Read More
Can I Handle My Own Divorce Without a Lawyer?
The simple answer is yes. The better question is whether or not it is advisable to handle your own divorce. In short, the answer is no - it is not advisable.
If your case involves any of the items listed below, it is highly recommended that you retain (or at least consult) competent counsel:
Legal Decision Making issues (custody)
Child Support … Read More
How do I know if an asset is really my sole and separate property?
In the State of Arizona, any and all property is presumed to be community property. However, property is characterized at the time of its acquisition and therefore, if you owned property prior to your marriage, it is and remains your separate property – unless you gifted same to your spouse, entered an agreement to transfer same to your spouse, or commingled same with property of your spouse AND it is … Read More
How long will it take for my divorce to be final?
The amount of time it takes for a divorce to be finalized is different in everyone's case and is driven by a variety of factors.
One of the most important factors is whether other professionals need to be brought into the case such as custody evaluators or business appraisers. This will take more time, as they play an important role in helping to provide information necessary to either settle the case or … Read More
Categories: Family Law
Financial Issues in Divorce - Dissipation or "Waste" Claims
In Arizona, it is not uncommon for a spouse in a dissolution proceeding to assert a "waste" claim against the other spouse. The term "waste" does not appear in the Arizona statutes that define community property or relate to the dissolution of marriage.
The concept generally derives from the fact that both spouses in a marriage have a fiduciary relationship to each other that extends to the community … Read More
How to Prepare for Mediation
Mediation is a voluntary process in which the parties jointly select a neutral third party facilitator to help reach resolution of all or some of the issues in their divorce proceeding.
Mediation as we prefer to conduct it involves the lawyers at all times, including all meetings between the clients and the mediator. The mediator is a private person who is engaged and will typically be compensated based on … Read More