Logo
Call Now(480)305-8300

Attorney Fees in an Arizona Divorce | Voted “Best of the Valley”

Posted on : February 29, 2016, By:  Christopher Hildebrand
Attorney Fees in an Arizona Divorce

Attorney Fees in an Arizona Divorce

Attorney Fees in a Divorce in Arizona.

Attorney Fees in a Divorce in Arizona.

In Arizona, the family court is allowed to award attorneys’ fees after it considers the financial resources of both parties and the reasonableness of their positions during the divorce proceedings. The unpublished case of Flynn v. Rodrick leaves the Court of Appeals of Arizona considering whether both a disparity in financial resources and an unreasonable opponent are required in order for the court to award attorneys’ fees in an Arizona Divorce. Lois Ann Flynn (Wife) filed a petition for divorce in 2011. A trial was held in May 2013 after a number of pretrial motions and discovery disputes occurred during the case.  The Decree of Dissolution of Marriage was entered in December 2013. In the divorce decree, Wife was awarded child support, the marital assets and debts were divided, and Wife was awarded reasonable attorneys’ fees and costs based on the disparity in financial resources because Charles David Rodrick (Husband) had considerably more resources available to contribute towards attorneys’ fees and costs.

The award was based upon the disparity in the financial resources available to each spouse.  Wife was ordered to provide requested documentation in support of an application for a partial award of attorney fees and costs by December 9, 2013, including the required China Doll Affidavit and a form of order for the judge to sign. Father was ordered to file written objections by December 23, 2013. Upon review of the documentation and objections, the Court determined the amount of the award.  Ultimately, the Court entered a judgment in favor of Wife for $50,000 in attorney fees and costs plus interest and Husband appealed in a timely manner.

Jennifer, thank you for being my attorney. I could not have been more pleased with the outcome of my family court hearing. Everything you have done for me throughout this case reflects in the final ruling of the judge. You helped me keep my head together and taught me a lot about myself as a person. I learned so much about my life from observing and listening to you. I will take all the advice you gave me to continue taking responsibility for my choices, continue to put the kids' needs first, and always stay truthful. Your diligence, dedication, and persistence in my case made what seemed impossible, possible. You are a wonderful person and an amazing attorney and I am stronger and more confident because of you.
A Google User
A Google User
20:31 20 Sep 17
I just want to again thank the Firm for working with me all that it has. I could not have done anything without everyone's assistance. You, Chris and Stacey have been and continue to provide me with compassion and hard work towards my case. Also a very special thanks to Kip for taking my case in the beginning. Also continued support from him and his dedication to providing me with his expertise in this matter.
A Google User
A Google User
21:41 07 Nov 17
After interviewing several law firms, I came across Jennifer Shick, and her firm, who I hired to represent me for my Family Court case. Jennifer has extensive knowledge of the law and is determined to bring the truth to every issue involved within the case. Throughout my case, Jennifer was prepared meticulously as well as went above and beyond all of my expectations. Even when the other party tried to differ from the truth, lie to the Judge, and turn situations around, Jennifer remained attentive and provided substantial evidence to show the judge the facts as well as the proof to support what was the best interests of my children. Additionally, Jennifer helped me endure many difficult experiences, situations and inspired me to remain positive throughout the entirety of my case. Her kindness, compassion, and professionalism helped me through very difficult times and made the process feel a thousand times lighter on my shoulders. She truly has my children and my best interest at heart and I trust her perspective as well as her honesty on each and every aspect of my case. She lessened the burden on my shoulders and even when I felt like the case was not going to go in my favor, Jennifer was open-minded and reassured me that the Judge would, in fact, see the truth, which he did and the case went in my favor. After nine months of court, everything finally came together. I cannot declare how much Jennifer has been an outstanding attorney. She addressed each and every issue with diligence, she cares about her clients and their families. Jennifer genuinely cares about her clients and her dedication to the details of the case was remarkable. Overall, I am extremely pleased with Jennifer’s services and I am truly thankful that I was so blessed to have her represent my children and me. I highly recommend Jennifer as one of the best attorneys in Arizona and if the situation ever arises, I will definitely have her represent my children and me again.
Google User
Google User
14:58 04 Oct 17
Dear Stacey and Kip, How can I ever thank you enough for helping me through the most difficult time in my life? I couldn't put into words my heartfelt gratefulness. You both were so compassionate and professional at every given moment throughout this process with me. I thank you from the bottom of my heart. You helped me to regain my freedom.
A Google User
A Google User
16:03 22 Nov 17
I was a client of Attorney Kevin Park for the dissolution of a divorce in 2016. And since I had never had the need to hire an attorney before for any purpose, I was somewhat apprehensive of the process. But the very calm and professional demeanor of Mr. Park eased my fears. He adeptly answered all my questions and I clearly knew the process and what to expect. And the skilled manner he communicated with opposing counsel was perfect. When it came down to negotiating with my spouse’s counsel, I knew I had selected the best attorney for my situation. What I noticed and appreciated was that he was using just the right amount of pressure with opposing counsel as was necessary. If you find yourself in this situation, you will want a seasoned professional like Mr. Park on your side. I'm very grateful that he was my attorney and not the opposition!
A Google User
A Google User
22:14 28 Jun 17
Chris is a smart and aggressive attorney for his clients. Chris always tries to reach a fair settlement of his cases. I’ve represented clients when Chris was the opposing counsel and while he is professional and amicable to work with, he does not back off on what he needs to do for his client
A Google User
A Google User
18:16 18 Sep 17
Kevin Park of Arizona Estate Planning Attorneys was just what I needed for my divorce. He was very approachable and personable. He was quick to recognize what I needed and provided it quickly and efficiently. I hope to never need a divorce lawyer again, but if I know anyone else who does, I will definitely recommend Kevin.
A Google User
A Google User
19:22 23 Aug 17
I feel that Tracey Van Wickler is certainly one of the best family lawyers around. She is logical, intelligent, and truly cares. Tracey always does what is in the clients best interest, does it well, timely and with integrity. She is good at keeping her clients informed as to what is going on and clear in her communication both written and verbally. I have recommended Tracey to other people and will continue to recommend her. I recommended Tracey to someone who was having issues with their ex-wife and his response was, “I know how good she is because I went up against her and she ate me for lunch”. This same person was so impressed with her, he even recommended her to someone else, WOW, that is impressive! I am exceptionally happy with her attention to detail, her ability to explain things in ways that are easy to understand, as well as her ability to keep everyone focused on the most important things. I would recommend Tracey to anyone who may be in need of her services.
A Google User
A Google User
17:44 23 Jun 16
I retained Hildebrand Law after interview a number of firms in the valley. Working with Michael C. was incredibly easy and informative. My case progressed in such a organized and thought out way to ensure that my needs were met. Michael was incredibly proactive and was able to see far ahead into my case to steer clear of some roadblocks. I would not hesitate to recommend Michael Clancy, and Hildebrand Law in general, to anyone.
Bassam Ziadeh
Bassam Ziadeh
21:20 02 Apr 18
I have worked with Hildebrand law for about 8 years. They are always ready to serve, provide guidance and give you a few options. When they provide you options they also take the time to walk you through the pros and cons of each and give you a recommendation of what is best, but will listen to you and support whatever course you choose after making and educated choice. I’d recommend them to my closest friends and feel Chris Hildebrand is now a friend to me.
Larry Flint
Larry Flint
21:53 27 Feb 18
Despite the unfortunate situation I found myself in, Chris Hildebrand @ Hildebrand Law helped me maneuver every step with professionalism, expertise, and even a sensitivity that was an added bonus.Chris and his staff helped me even when I didn't know I needed the help. In other words. . . they made sure we did not leave anything undone. And in the rare instance we needed the expertise of another professional, Chris knew exactly who to recommend.Chris also knew, because of his experience, what to anticipate down the road of litigation. That meant we were better prepared to meet the challenges head on, which lead to a more equitable and fair outcome. I appreciated that Chris did his best to meet my every need in a timely fashion, even if I had a simple question that required only a phone call or e-mail or if we needed to talk face-to-face.I highly recommend Chris Hildebrand @ Hildebrand Law, PC.
Sam Franchimone
Sam Franchimone
22:09 12 Sep 13
I cannot express enough how thankful I am that I found Hildrebrand Law. Chris Hildebrand is an excellent attorney who has my best interests in mind and always encourages me to do the right thing regardless of what the opposing party is doing. Chris knows family law very well and relies on that knowledge to format options and solutions for each situation that may arise. He knows what the Court expects and what will and will not be tolerated. He has attempted to settle this case quickly and as inexpensively as possible from the start. His paralegal, Laura, is remarkable. She is organized, quick to respond, and compassionate. Chris is well prepared with a binder full of detailed and organized information and that is likely due to her thorough skills and expertise. While getting a divorce that was unexpected is a painful and difficult process, Chris and Laura treat my family and I like friends rather than another just "client." I am hopeful that I do not need to recommend divorce lawyers to anyone in the future but if I do, Hildebrand Law will be a recommendation I would give hands down.
Lindsay Donoian
Lindsay Donoian
06:53 27 Sep 14

What it Takes to Be Awarded Attorney Fees in a Divorce

Award of Attorney Fees in Arizona.

Award of Attorney Fees in Arizona.

Husband argued that the Family Court abused its discretion in this case when it granted the attorney fee and cost award to Wife of attorney’s fees and costs to Wife.  Arizona Revised Statute Section 25-324(A) provides that Family Court with the ability to award attorney’s fees once after it considers the financial resources of both parties, as well as the reasonableness of their positions during the court proceedings. Some prior case law held that the reasonableness of the parties positions and the parties’ financial resources are two separate considerations. The separation of the two led to the conclusion that an applicant for an award of attorney’s fees is not required to show both a financial disparity and an unreasonable position held by their opponent in order to be awarded attorney fees in an Arizona divorce case.

The Arizona Court of Appeals reviewed the award for an abuse of discretion. In order for the Court to find an abuse of discretion, there must either be no evidence supporting the conclusions of the Family Court or the reasons offered must be legally incorrect, clearly untenable, or represent an obvious denial of justice. When there is no request for findings and specific findings of fact are specified by the Family Court, the Arizona Court of Appeals must assume that the divorce court considered relevant factors, found all necessary facts to support the ruling and must affirm so long as there is any reasonable construction of evidence that supports the decision.

The Basis of the Award of Attorney Fees

What it Takes to Get Attorney Fees.

What it Takes to Get Attorney Fees.

The Family Court concluded that there existed between the two parties a financial disparity warranting an award of attorney’s fees and costs to Wife. Husband claims that the record does not support the Family Court’s findings, and in support of his argument that there was an abuse of discretion, he cites his own testimony. Yet Husband failed to provide the Court of Appeals with a transcript of the trial. The Appellant is responsible for providing records, transcripts, documentation, etc. necessary for the Arizona Court of Appeals to consider the issued being raised. When a party fails to do so, the Court assumes the record at trial would support the court’s findings and/or conclusions. Therefore, the Arizona Court of Appeals found that the Family Court did not abuse its discretion when awarding Wife attorney’s fees and costs.

The husband in Flynn v. Rodrick argues on appeal that Wife’s application for attorney’s fees is unreasonable. After reviewing the Husband’s brief, the Court understands his argument to be that the billing statement was lacking in detail, that the billing rate was too high, and hours were over-billed. The Court disagrees with Husband’s arguments and finds Wife’s application for attorney’s fees and costs to be reasonable. The Arizona Court of Appeals affirmed the Family Court’s Judgment and Award of Attorney’s Fees and Costs.

Call us at (480)305-8300 to schedule your personalized consultation with one of our experienced Phoenix and Scottsdale Arizona divorce attorneys.

Hildebrand Law, PC | Voted Best of Our Valley in Arizona Foothills Magazine.

Hildebrand Law, PC | Voted Best of Our Valley in Arizona Foothills Magazine.



Related Blogs – What’s Hot