Things You Should Know About Arizona Divorce Law

Each state has its own requirements for dissolving a marriage, and Arizona is no exception. If you plan to get a divorce in Arizona, you should be aware of the specific state laws so that your divorce is legally recognized and finalized. Here are a few important things to know about Arizona divorce law.

Covenant Marriage

Arizona is one of three U.S. states that recognizes a covenant marriage. This means that you and your spouse may be required to attend counseling and try other ways to work out any differences before you can file for a divorce. Exceptions to this rule may be if one of you had an extramarital affair or were physically or sexually abused by the other spouse. You may also be exempt from following the divorce provisions related to a covenant marriage if the two of you have been legally separated for at least one year without reconciliation.

Community Property

Arizona is a community property state that divides all property obtained during a marriage equally between both spouses. Any property, gifts or inheritances that you receive once you begin the divorce process will remain yours and not be subject to community property laws. Arizona also recognizes premarital agreements along with post-nuptial agreement that may allow you to keep some additional property. To get a clearer understanding of how community property works in Arizona, you can consult with an attorney at Scottsdale’s best divorce law firm or another law office in your area.

Child Support

An income shares model is used by the state to determine the exact amount of child support that is owed each month. Each parent’s income is examined by the court to calculate what needs to be paid. The court could also request to see your W-2 forms along with other tax information. With the income shares model, each child is supposed to receive the same amount of income that he or she would have received if the parents were still married.

Divorce Mediation

You and your spouse can possibly avoid the courtroom by settling the terms of your divorce through divorce mediation. A mediator that has been authorized by the state will meet with both of you to work out an agreement that fulfills both of your best interests. You and your spouse can bring in each of your respective attorneys to help with negotiations. During this meeting, you can settle things like debts, property divisions and parental agreements. Any written agreements that you sign will be legally binding. However, any written agreements that were signed can be challenged at a later date if either party signed under duress or coercion or was not physically or mentally competent to agree.

Getting a divorce in Arizona has some unique challenges that could involve some additional footwork and legal processes. By learning all the important information and hiring the right lawyer, you can make the entire process easier on yourself and dissolve your marriage the right way.