Complex Divorce Cases in Arizona
Arizona Complex Divorce Cases
Many Arizona divorce attorneys are equipped with the experience to represent clients in simple divorce cases. Fewer divorce attorneys, however, have the necessary experience and knowledge to handle complex divorce cases in Arizona.
Other family law attorneys in Arizona have referred some of their potential clients to Hildebrand Law, PC because of our ability to effectively handle such complex divorce cases.
A divorce is classified as a complex divorce case in Arizona because of the complicated nature of the issues in the case and/or because one of the parties is attempting to use the legal system to abuse and/or control the other party. We want to provide information regarding both causes of a complex divorce case and share tips on what you can do to minimize the emotional and financial cost of a complex divorce case.
There are several issues that exist in almost every divorce case. The parties may have children and need child custody and parenting time orders entered by the Court. The parties also need to address child support and, in some cases, alimony issues. The parties also have to resolve the division of their assets and debts. One or more expert witnesses may be involved in a complex divorce case.
Complex Child Custody Cases in Arizona
A complex child custody case may include allegations of the emotional, physical, sexual abuse or neglect of a child by the other spouse. Sometimes these allegations are true and sometimes they are not true. Sometimes the person asserting the allegation of abuse against a child is doing so for the sole reason of interfering with that parent’s relationship with the child and sometimes the person asserting the allegation truly believes the other spouse has abused his or her children.
Complex child custody cases are undoubtedly highly emotional. Many experts may be necessary to unravel the allegations to determine if a child will be placed in danger of harm if the other parent has unrestricted access to his or her children. The children may be placed in therapy with a counselor who has experience counseling children who have allegedly been abused.
There are very few counselors who have a particular skill and experience to properly counsel children in child abuse cases. A qualified child abuse counselor will know not to ask the child leading questions and will also understand how to evaluate the reliability of any disclosures the child may make regarding abuse or neglect during counseling.
The court may also appoint a child custody evaluator to complete an investigation into the allegations, as well as the other child custody factors a court must consider before issuing child custody order, and issue a report containing his or her opinion and recommendations regarding what child custody and parenting time arrangements are in the best interests of the children. The opinions of these experts may carry a lot of weight in the judge’s final orders, but they are not controlling.
It is imperative you have an attorney who has the ability, processes, and procedures to educate these experts during their evaluations and to understand how to interpret and, if necessary, challenge the basis of the expert’s conclusions and recommendations. We have successfully bolstered the reports of expert witnesses and have successfully had some or substantially all of the findings and recommendations of these experts disregarded by the court.
Complex Child Support and Alimony Issues in Arizona
Complex child support and alimony cases in Arizona typically arise when one of the parties’ income is not easily determined because they are either self-employed and do not accurately represent their income on business financial statements or are paid in cash, which is not reported on their business financial statements.
Your attorney should be equipped with the experience and knowledge on how to use various methods to uncover hidden income. There may also be questions pertaining to whether an unemployed spouse has the necessary skills to return to the workforce to earn an income sufficient to pay their living expenses or contribute to the support of the parties’ children.
A vocational evaluator may be necessary to evaluate the prior education, training, and experience a spouse may rely upon to obtain employment, as well as to issue a report containing his or her expert opinion regarding the various jobs a particular spouse may be able to secure, the amount of salary and other employment benefits the spouse is eligible to obtain, and the future growth in salary and benefits the spouse should be able to earn in the future.
Child support and alimony cases can also be complicated due to one spouse claiming either a physical or mental disability that impacts their ability to obtain employment. If the court finds the spouse has a condition that affects his or her ability to work, the court could order the other spouse to pay alimony indefinitely.
In such cases, an attorney should obtain all of the spouse’s medical records and, at a minimum, have them reviewed by an independent medical professional to evaluate whether the doctor who made the diagnosis followed the correct protocol in reaching his or her conclusion.
You may also retain an expert witness to conduct an Independent Medical Examination of the spouse claiming the disability to refute the spouse’s claim of a disability. It may also be appropriate to hire a private investigator and interview various witnesses who may have witnessed the spouse participating in physical or other activities that are inconsistent with the claimed disability.
Complex Community Property Issues in Arizona
Complex community property issues in an Arizona divorce case typically involve the valuation of a business that was either started during the marriage or was the separate business of a spouse but that business has increased in value thereby creating a community property interest in that business.
The Arizona Court of Appeals has ruled the trial judge has broad discretion regarding which valuation methodology should be used and whether the community’s interest in the business should or should not be divided in the divorce.
The differing valuation methodologies, as well as the evaluation of the income, expenses, assets, and debts of the business necessarily require you hire an attorney with a financial background to ensure the expert and the court are applying the correct methodologies and have come to the correct conclusions with respect to the value of the business.
It is also important that your attorney understand the interplay between alimony and an award of a community interest in the business since both alimony and the value of the business are both primarily determined based upon the income produced by the business.
Complex Divorce Cases Because of an Abusive and Controlling Spouse
A divorce case may also be classified as complex if one or both of the parties simply wish to use the legal system as a way to harass or control the other party or one or both parties have a personality disorder. These can be the most complex divorce cases because it may take a long time before the unreasonable spouse may engage in obstructionist, litigious, and abusive litigation tactics for a very long time.
If children are involved, most qualified child custody evaluators will require both parties to take various psychological tests for the purpose of obtaining some information regarding the mental health of each party. However, these tests are not likely to result in an actual diagnosis of a personality disorder. You may, therefore, also need to hire an expert to conduct a full psychological and/or psychiatric evaluation to dig deeper into the mental health of one or both of the parties.
If a diagnosis is made and the diagnosis impacts the parent’s ability to parent his or her children, the court may order the parent to participate in continued therapy to protect the best interests of the children.
More Articles About Divorce in Arizona
- The advantage of Filing Divorce First in Arizona
- Are Prenuptial Agreements Enforceable in Arizona
- Arizona Divorce
- Arizona Divorce Attorney Reviews
- Arizona Divorce Child Custody
- Arizona Divorce Debt
- Arizona Divorce Forms
- Arizona Divorce Laws
- Arizona Divorce Laws Alimony
- Arizona Divorce Laws and Statutes
- Arizona Divorce Laws on Adultery
- Arizona Divorce Papers
- Arizona Divorce Practice
- Arizona Divorce Process
- Arizona Divorce Records Search
- Arizona Marriage Laws
- Asset and Property Search in an Arizona Divorce
- Arizona Divorce When You Can’t Find Your Spouse
- Change to Maiden Name After Divorce in Arizona
- Changing Orders in an Arizona Divorce Decree
- Children and Divorce in Arizona
- College Expenses After Divorce in Arizona
- Conciliation Court Services in Arizona
- Consent Required for Marriage of Minors in Arizona
- Considering the Children during a Divorce in Arizona
- Convert to a Covenant Marriage in Arizona
- Coping With Divorce in Arizona
- Court Services to Save a Marriage in Arizona
- Custody of the Family Pet in a Divorce in Arizona
- Dissolution of Marriage in Arizona
- Divorce After Legal Separation in Arizona
- Divorce and Children in Arizona
- Divorce Arizona
- Divorce Case is on the Inactive Calendar in Arizona
- Divorce Court Jurisdiction in Arizona
- Divorce in Arizona Without Children
- Divorce Procedures in Arizona
- Divorce Records in Arizona
- Divorce Statistics in Arizona
- Divorce Support Groups in Arizona
- Domestic Violence and Divorce in Arizona
- Effect of Adultery on an Arizona Divorce
- Effects of Divorce on Children in Arizona
- Enforceable Arizona Prenuptial Agreements
- Failure to Include an Issue in an Arizona Divorce
- Filing for Divorce in Arizona
- Filing for Divorce to Receive Alimony in Arizona
- Guide to Divorce for Men in Arizona
- High Asset Divorce in Arizona
- High Conflict Divorce in Arizona
- High Net Worth Divorce Arizona
- How is a Divorce Finalized in Arizona
- How Long Does a Contested Divorce Take in Arizona
- How Long Does it Take to Get a Divorce in Arizona
- How Long Does it Take to Get Divorced in Arizona
- How Long Does Uncontested Divorce Take in Arizona
- How Long To Be Separated Before Divorce in Arizona
- How long to get Temporary Orders in Arizona
- How Much Does it Cost to Get a Divorce in Arizona
- How to Appeal a Divorce Decree in Arizona
- How To Find Good Divorce Attorney in Arizona
- How to Start a Divorce in Arizona
- Learn About Uncontested Divorce in Arizona
- Legally Separated File Divorce in Arizona
- Marital Settlement Agreement in Arizona
- The merger of the Settlement Agreement in Arizona
- Military Divorce Laws in Arizona
- Misled Into Signing Divorce Settlement in Arizona
- Modifying a Divorce Decree in Arizona
- No Contest Divorce in Arizona
- No-Fault Divorce in Arizona
- Order to Pay Spouses Attorney Fees in Arizona
- Parenting Class During a Divorce in Arizona
- Petition for Dissolution of Marriage in Arizona
- Protect Children in a Divorce in Arizona
- Quick Divorce in Arizona
- Reasons for Divorce in Arizona
- Reasons to File for Divorce in Arizona
- Represent Yourself in Arizona Divorce Case
- Same-Sex Divorce in Arizona
- Sealing Court Records in an Arizona Divorce
- Sell Home During Divorce in Arizona
- Selling Property During a Divorce in Arizona
- Served With Divorce Papers in Arizona
- Serving Divorce Papers by Publication in Arizona
- Should I Keep the House in a Divorce in Arizona
- Social Media Evidence in Divorce in Arizona
- Stop an Arizona Divorce
- Stop an Arizona Divorce if You Change Your Mind
- What Happens at a Resolution Management Conference in Arizona
- What Happens If the Divorce Case Goes to Trial in Arizona
- What Happens Temporary Orders Hearing in Arizona
- What is a Covenant Marriage in Arizona
- What is a Default Divorce in Arizona
- What is a Family Law Master in an Arizona Divorce Case
- What is a Preliminary Injunction in an Arizona Divorce
- What is a Temporary Orders Hearing in Arizona
- What is the Divorce Process in Arizona
- What Reasons Do I Need to Obtain a Divorce in a Covenant Marriage in Arizona
- What to do When Served with Divorce Papers in Arizona
- When Can I File For Divorce in Arizona
Chris Hildebrand wrote the information on this page about complex divorce cases in Arizona to ensure everyone has access to information about a complex divorce in Arizona. Chris is a 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 actually caring about what his clients are going through.