As Phoenix, Arizona residents would agree, divorce becomes inherently more complicated when children are involved. While spouses can look forward to a better future ahead, children are sometimes left feeling insecure, believing that parents should remain together and live under the same roof. While always keeping the best interests of the child in mind, a court often orders one parent to take custody of a child and orders the other parent to pay child support.
Arizona fathers often have a lot to contend with when they go through the divorce process. Many times, they worry about property division and spousal support, but child custody can also play a significant role in the dissolution of their divorce. Since child custody issues are resolved in the best interests of the child, a parent's history may be significant in the final determination. Thus, domestic violence allegations can become a critical matter in the divorce process.
Last week's blog post discussed relocation in the child custody context. In addition to struggling understand the complex legalities of these situations, you may find the issue heated and leaving you unsure of what to do. Even if you have custody of your child, you may need to move for a new job or a career opportunity, or an elderly loved one may need you to move to help take care of them. You probably don't want to leave your child behind. On the flip side, you may not want your former spouse to move away with your child. This could threaten the bond you have with your child and affect your ability to see him or her on a regular basis.
One of the most significant considerations that can impact parents during a divorce or separation is child custody which is why it can be helpful to understand how child custody decisions are made. Child custody decisions are focused on determinations related to the child's custody and care. The primary considerations are the child's well-being and safety. To achieve this, the court focuses on what is in the best interests of the child. To determine what that really is in a particular case, the court may consider a variety of factors.
Arizona couples can spend a lot of time trying to make their relationship work for the sake of their children. However, in some cases the relationship is just beyond repair and couples are just better off apart. When couples consider divorce, there can be a common misconception that the woman will automatically get the children and the majority of the couple's assets. In today's society though, this is not necessarily true. Arizona law gives protections to both spouses and child custody is awarded after a consideration of the best interests of the child.
Sometimes, divorcing parents get a lot of advice about what they can expect with regard to child custody. One bit of "helpful" advice a father may hear is that favor the mother and will generally award her custody. But is that really true? Are fathers' rights almost nonexistent?
When Arizona spouses divorce, many issues will be discussed and decided. If a couple is the parents of children under the age of 18, child custody will be one of these issues. How custody, often called timeshare, will be determined can vary. The parents themselves can work out an agreement to present to a judge. Parents can engage a mediator to help them reach an agreement. As a last result, the couple can ask a judge to produce a timeshare arrangement based on input from each parent.
Arizona residents know that divorces can be contentious. Emotions often run high in the face of a life-changing event. This is particularly true when children are involved. However, divorcing parents will need to work together to raise their children, and before that can happen an agreement must be reached. All divorces involving minor children will include some type of agreement regarding the children. Many times, a financial child support arrangement is one such agreement. But how can an agreement be reached? There are three primary methods: informally, through the courts or through mediation.
Arizona fathers facing a divorce that involves paternity issues may be interested in a recent Michigan court's ruling. The case centered on a married woman who had a child with another man. When the child was born in 2011, both husband and wife assumed the child was the husband's, and the law presumed so also. This is because in many states, the child of a married woman is automatically considered the husband's child. The couple divorced in 2013, the now ex-husband moved to another state and he was awarded generous visitation rights with his child.
Arizona parents with a child support order may be interested to learn about new efforts states are taking to collect child support payments. Currently, when a parent isn't paying as ordered, many states will garnish wages, withhold tax returns, deny passports or suspend business licenses. But there are limitations to these efforts. For example, states may not be able to impose the penalties if the paying parent has remarried, as the new spouse cannot be penalized for the parent-spouse's failure to pay.