As of 2013, Arizona has revised its statutes (laws) regarding custody (legal decision making) and parenting time.
A high asset divorce can be very complex because of the numerous properties and the substantial amount of finances involved. Parties in this type of divorce are very protective of their immense fortunes. The allegation that some parties undervalue or do not fully disclose their assets has become common.
Divorce is extremely common in the United States, including in Arizona. A couple marries thinking that it will last forever but that isn't always the case. An Arizona spouse contemplating divorce should consider filing before his or her spouse because it may give the person a distinct advantage on several issues, including property division.
Being the first to file may give the person an emotional, psychological and strategic edge. Filing early may prevent a spouse from undervaluing or hiding assets, including debts. In Arizona, debts procured during the marriage are considered community debt and will be divided equally. This does not include gambling debts and debts that existed before the marriage. Similarly, community property covers valuables that were acquired during the marriage like financial accounts, retirement accounts, businesses and the marital home.
A divorce often has the potential to get messy. Not only can a divorce take its toll on spouses but the children involved also may face some difficulty. Child custody disputes can be challenging, possibly causing undue strain on everyone involved. Fortunately, a new bill aimed at cutting the child custody hearing waiting time has made its way through the Arizona Senate and House of Representatives and has been signed into law.
The bill which requires that child custody hearings be held within a 60-day period successfully passed through the Arizona House of Representatives with a unanimous vote of 50 to 8. The bill previously passed the Senate unopposed, garnering all 29 votes. With such strong legislative support, the Governor recently added her signature for approval and the bill has officially become law.
Occasionally, there is a case that piques national interest. Such ground-breaking potential is exhibited in a recent case where a person born female -- who is now physically and legally a man -- is undergoing the intricacies of a divorce and the issue of parenting time.
In Maricopa, a family court judge denied the divorce request of a transgender man, who is seeking a divorce from his wife of nine years, citing lack of proof that the man was transgender when the marriage license was issued and citing difficulty finding legitimacy in a man with birth capacity. The transgender man was born a woman and underwent several surgeries, psychological evaluation and hormone therapy; however, he retained female reproductive organs so that he could have children. He conceived with the help of donated sperm.
Divorce is a life-altering experience for couples. As emotions run high, some Phoenix spouses fail to address important matters in the middle of the turmoil because they want to finalize the divorce too quickly. This can result in an undesirable outcome felt by spouses long after the divorce has been settled.
Although property division is often overlooked by spouses, it is important to consider it carefully. For example, most couples name each other as beneficiaries for estate plans while they are still married. This includes wills, pension accounts and retirement accounts. Immediately excluding an ex-spouse on these documents can be a good start to securing the future and can provide assurance that when one of the ex-spouses decides to remarry or finally retire, there will be no last-minute issues to settle. It is also important to check whether one's ex-spouse has power of attorney.
Phoenix couples are aware that not all marriages last. Depending on the circumstances, the split may turn contentious, especially when significant properties and assets are involved. Local residents of Maricopa County may have heard some of the prominent names like Harold Hamm, CEO of Continental Resources, who recently filed for a divorce.
Harold Hamm, one of the richest people in the United States, is currently divorcing his wife, Sue Ann Hamm. The divorce settlement is expected to be complicated due to high assets and business interests. Hamm owns 68 percent of Continental, a stake estimated to be over $11 billion. Many believe that theirs will be one of the most expensive divorce cases of all time.
Understandably, most Arizona residents would prefer to refrain from thinking of the possibility of divorce during wedding preparations. However, they will be behaving sensibly if they consider signing a prenuptial agreement before the wedding. Many local citizens incorrectly presume that signing a prenuptial agreement is a sign that the marriage will definitely end in divorce at some point.
Another incorrect assumption regarding prenuptial agreements is that they are important only for the rich and famous. Phoenix couples may be interested about a New York couple that recently made the headlines because of their nullified prenuptial agreement.
With the resurgence of the housing industry, many Phoenix, Arizona, residents would like to take advantage of buying a new house or moving to a new apartment. However, a new child custody law in Arizona that seeks to provide non-custodial parents with additional rights when it comes to raising their children may hinder matters.
After a 17-12 vote, with all Democrats opposed, Senate Bill 1072 will impose new rules affecting a divorced parent's relocation. Under the new law, custodial parents are required to give notice to non-custodial parents before any relocation.
Couples in Maricopa County and Phoenix, Arizona, know that the process of ending a marriage can be complicated. This is especially true if a couple is dealing with high-end assets during the course of the divorce settlement. In Arizona, which is a community property state, assets and debts acquired during the marriage are equally divided between the two spouses. Gifts and inheritances are excluded and deemed as separate property.
Property division usually turns out to be complicated because of retirement accounts, houses, bank accounts and other valuable properties. The divorce could go smoothly if both parties have signed a prenuptial agreement prior to their marriage, specifying how those assets and properties are going to be divided in the event of divorce.
A common mistake that divorcing couples make is trying to handle the divorce alone. They may try not to hire an attorney, thinking it will be expensive and contentious.