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Tuscon Arizona Family Law Blog

Seeking guidance on what to expect during divorce in Arizona

Many couples in Arizona and elsewhere may enter a marriage with the intent of remaining together throughout life. As studies suggest that as many as 50 percent of marriages result in divorce, this might not always be the outcome. Since dissolving a marriage is a major decision that could impact one's future, a person could benefit from taking the time to consider certain crucial topics before choosing a path.

Ending a marriage can be a stressful process, and since the outcome of a divorce will inherently affect a person's life, giving a fair amount of thought into the process is advisable. Once divorce is the decided outcome, a person could find it helpful to take steps to prepare for the process, such as researching Arizona state laws. This type of information could prove vital in preparing a person for subsequent negotiations.

Understanding how discovery works in a divorce

While every divorce is as different as every couple going through them, there are some elements that are common to many, depending on the process of divorce a couple chooses. Among the first steps the spouses should take when considering a divorce is seeking the legal guidance of an attorney who is experienced in the nuances of Arizona family law. Each party will need a separate attorney. Once the divorce petition has been filed with the appropriate courts, the opposing sides will begin the discovery phase.

Many legal actions have a form of discovery wherein both sides share with each other any relevant information that can be used in court. Discovery depends on each participant offering honest answers to questions and providing complete details about the issues in question. In that way, the court can better work toward a fair divorce order.

Child support and divorce

When an Arizona couple decides that it is time to end their marriage, there are a number of financial issues that need to be taken into consideration. Child support is often a concern when the couple decides to divorce. How much the individual will receive or will owe can affect a number of other decisions that the individual will need to make.

On the surface, child support appears to be a fairly easy number to calculate -- each individual is responsible for a set percentage. Each parent's income is stated, and the calculation can be made. Yet, there are a multitude of items that are taken into consideration in calculating this figure.

What to prepare for as a sole-custody military parent

Regardless of how you lost your significant other, raising a child as a single parent in the military can appear overwhelming. You may not know when you are going to get deployed and what will happen to your kids while you are away.

Given how unpredictable the circumstances are, you need to begin making a plan to ensure your loved ones are safe and cared for if you are deployed.

Sharing your pension during a military divorce

There are many aspects we have to consider during a divorce; our pension is definitely one of those small details. Most divorcees assume pensions are split evenly - or "fairly" based on state law - but military couples are not subjected to the same process.

Military divorce cases are covered by federal law in terms of how retired pay is divided between U.S. military service members and former spouses.

Divorce does not have to create a financial dilemma

Financial issues are a primary reason that some Arizona residents remain in an unhappy situation. They are often concerned about how much money they will have coming in, what their expenses will be and what their extended financial future looks like. Yet, with a little bit of planning and budgeting many of these concerns can be alleviated and the individual can take the necessary steps, such as divorce, to change his or her situation.

One of the first things the individual will want to do is analyze his or her budget. This can be done by taking a close look at income that the individual anticipates receiving on a regular basis. Then, anticipated expenses will need to be included. These expenses should include housing, utilities, outstanding debts that the individual will be responsible for as well as any support payments that the individual may be expected to make. Once this has been accomplished, the individual will have a good idea of what to expect financially and if any income or expense adjustments need to be made.

College expenses and divorce

College is expensive. Under ideal circumstances, Arizona parents have planned, saved and invested to be prepared for this expense. In addition, the child has studied and worked hard to earn a college acceptance letter. Yet, even when these things have happened, a divorce can alter the college financial picture.

A lot of things change when a couple decides to divorce. Even though they still want to give their child every possible advantage, this desire will need to be tempered with realistic financial expectations.  In many cases, one parent may ask for all or a percentage of college expenses to be paid as a part of the divorce agreement. This is a valid request, yet the way in which it is addressed can be critical.

When a child custody modification in Arizona is a wise move

Circumstances in life change. When Arizona parents who have been divorced for a while with a specific child custody agreement in order go through those inevitable changes with their kids, perhaps a modification to the custody agreement may be in order. If a modification is in the best interests of the child, a court may grant the request.

A child custody modification may also be necessary in a dire straits situation such as domestic violence. When one parent is living in a violent situation with a child, the child may be in harm's way. The court will want to protect the child from such situations. A court will ascertain if a child is in imminent danger and make any modifications to a custody agreement it sees fit.

Divorce in Arizona after 50 may come with financial consequences

Women who have relied on their husbands to make the financial decisions in their marriages may encounter problems should the marriage dissolve after many years. In Arizona and elsewhere, not only could gray divorce -- or divorce after the age of 50 -- mean a significant loss of income, it could also spell the need for some, mostly women, to learn to manage finances on their own. In fact, more than 55 percent of married women leave the financial aspects of their marriages to their husbands.

The women who are unaware of the financial part of their marriages become cognizant not only of the problems, but of the positives of their finances, when their marriages fizzle. Perhaps they didn't know about a retirement plan their spouse set up or a trust fund or other hidden asset gems. Women 50 or older who are divorcing are often forced into having to deal with these sorts of monetary issues, and reports show in the long run they believe that to have been a good thing.

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