Children and Divorce

Dedicated Phoenix family law attorney explains how we compassionately handle delicate situations involving children and divorce. 

Read Our FREE Divorce Guide

One of the most difficult parts of family law is dealing with children and divorce. I’ve seen this as a divorce lawyer. I’ve seen this, albeit I’m a happily married man now, as a prior divorcee. This is a very tough process for the parents. It’s a very tough process for the children regardless of their age range because things are about to change for those children. Things are about to change for those parents. Arizona has codified, within its revised statute, certain requirements that even attempt to speak to that arduous effect that this would have on children. For example, in Arizona, if there are children involved in a divorce, there’s a mandatory parenting class that you have to take. If you don’t take that parenting class, you could waive your right to parenting time, and/or decision-making authority with your children. That’s how strict Arizona is because it becomes a tough process with the children.

Some people ask, will my children have a say in who they stay with? Who’s going to pay child support? Who are the kids going to spend the night with? Who’s going to be the custodial parent? All of these things are things that are answered during the course of the divorce. There’s a number of factors that are considered. We can sign a Prenuptial Agreement delineating out certain things as it relates to the kids.

They might not understand that broadly you cannot delineate out certain things as it relates to the kids in the Prenuptial Agreement. The court makes a decision for the child that’s in the best interest of the child. What you agree to in a Prenuptial Agreement may not be what’s in the best interest of the child now.

There are certain things that the court will want to see: A Financial Affidavit of Records. They would want to get information with the child. Sometimes the child sits with a therapist or a counselor. Sometimes they get the child’s input depending on the age. Who’s the child been with? Have you been in prison for seven years? You come out and all of a sudden, you want custody rights to your child. There’s no hard-line rule as to what the court would do. The framework is what’s in the best interest of the child, making sure that the child’s life stays as consistent as possible.

Consider meeting with the lawyer. They would do a thorough interview with you about the child, about where the child goes to school. Do the parents live in the same neighborhood? Do they live in the same state? There is a myriad of things that have to be looked at when deciding about the children. What’s important to the divorcees that are going through the process is that divorces can have a long-lasting, substantial, and negative impact on children if not handled properly. We try to walk our clients through that process with a great decree of sensitively but also representing the interest that our clients want. You want to sit down and discuss all these factors with an attorney and come up with a strategy that’s in the best interest of the child because that is what the court is going to use broadly as a standard in making its decision as it relates to the parenting time, and as it relates to decision-making authority, or what’s commonly known as custody in other jurisdictions.

Are you considering divorce and have questions about how to handle children and divorce while maintaining their best interests? Call our dedicated Phoenix divorce lawyers for a free confidential consultation.