Child Custody and Support in Arizona
Going through a divorce in Arizona is an incredibly difficult process. No two couples are alike, yet the decision to separate is typically a difficult one. Because divorce is such a sensitive topic, many adults are afraid to talk about it. As a result, you may have some confusion about what to expect when it comes to child custody and support in Arizona. What should you expect when it comes to seeing your children? Will you need to pay child support to your former spouse? What about visits?
Fortunately, no matter what your separation has been like, there are legal stipulations in place to protect both you and your children during the divorce. Your attorney and the judge will work with you to ensure that both custody and support are fair and reasonable for all parties. Before you start the custody proceedings, however, there are a few things you need to know.
First off, keep in mind that no two separations are exactly the same. Perhaps your former spouse wants full custody of the children. Maybe you do. Maybe you’re disagreeing on how to handle child custody and support, or perhaps you’re in full agreement. The details of your situation will vary, so make sure you meet with an attorney to discuss the best custody and support arrangement for your family. The goal of custody and support is to ensure your children maintain the same standard of living and are able to continue to lead normal, healthy lives. Your attorney will work with you to ensure you each have the best possible outcome from the situation within the confines of what’s happening.
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Also remember that the process of determining custody for your children can take time. Make sure you discuss the process with your attorney. If you and your former spouse are on agreeable terms, you may be able to quickly come to an agreement on where your children will stay, where they will go to school, and how often they will visit the non-custodial parent. Unfortunately, if you and your ex cannot agree on how you’ll divide custody, the proceedings can take a bit longer. Still, your lawyer will work with you to help ensure your children receive the best possible outcome from the situation.
Once custody has been determined, child support will also be discussed and decided. Support ensures that your children are taken care of. Typically, the parent who doesn’t have full-time custody of the children will pay support to help cover living expenses for your children. Support is designed to ensure the children have everything they need when they are at their primary living space with their primary caregiver. The amount of support to be given will vary based on how many children you have, which parent has custody, and what the income of each parent currently is.
Finally, always talk with a child custody and support attorney about how to handle the divorce and custody arrangements. The right attorney will be able to guide you through the entire process and help answer any questions you might have, file paperwork, and represent you in court. Even if you and your former spouse are separating on amicable terms, it’s important that you seek legal representation for the sake of your children. The right attorney will be able to help you throughout the entire process and will help fight for you to receive the best possible outcome when it comes to custody arrangements.
While facing a divorce can be a sensitive and difficult experience, it’s important to remember that your attorney understands what you’re going through. He or she has worked with many divorcing couples before and understands exactly what it takes to get a positive outcome and how to guide you through the entire situation. You don’t have to face the paperwork or courtroom visits alone. Reach out and contact an attorney today so you can fight for the future you want.
It is important to understand that there are four people who have the greatest impact on how your children feel about your divorce; namely, you, your spouse, your attorney, and your spouse’s attorney. Any of these people can make the case more complicated and contentious by taking unreasonable positions or not communicating in a professional manner. A divorce is a difficult process, but it can be made even more difficult when just one of these people decide to allow emotions or greed to get in the way. It may be advisable for both spouses to engage in counseling to assist them in getting through the divorce process. If you see that your attorney is overly emotional about your divorce, you may consider seeking new counsel to represent you and communicate with your spouse that you are changing attorneys and why you are doing so to keep the case on track.
Chris Hildebrand wrote this article to ensure everyone has access to information about family law in Arizona. Chris is a divorce and family law attorney at Hildebrand Law, PC. He has over 24 years of Arizona family law experience and has received multiple awards, including US News and World Report “Top Arizona Divorce Attorneys”, Phoenix Magazine “Top Divorce Law Firms”, and Arizona Foothills Magazine “Best of the Valley” award. He believes the policies and procedures he uses to get his clients through a divorce should all be guided by the principles of honesty, integrity, and, quite frankly, actually caring about what his clients are going through in a divorce or family law case. In short, his practice is defined by the success of his clients. He also manages all of the other attorneys at his firm to make sure the outcomes in their clients’ cases are successful as well.