Common Types of Family Law Case

Most Common Types of Family Law Cases

No one wants conflict in their family, but life happens, and there is no shortage of family problems that can require legal intervention. From two people dissolving a marriage to addressing how to support a child, family law can be incredibly complicated and emotionally intense. At their core, family law cases involve people deciding matters close to their hearts, with major implications for the rest of their lives – and completing several family court documents to ensure a smooth, seamless case.

Common Types of Family Law

Arizona family court most often handles legal cases that have to do with marriage, children, and domestic violence. For instance, Arizona judges frequently address divorces, spousal maintenance, marital agreements, property division, and name changes as romantic partners navigate changing terms of their relationship. They also make major decisions that impact children’s futures in cases like child custody, child support, emancipation, guardianship, adoption, and termination of parental rights. Unfortunately, common Arizona family law cases involve domestic violence as well.


Ending a marriage is never easy, but it is quite common in Arizona. The state categorizes divorces into two types, distinguished by how the involved parties feel about the terms of the split: uncontested and contested divorce. Regardless of the type of divorce you’re facing, you might need legal support to navigate the complexities of the process.

file a divorce petition

Uncontested Divorce

If you and your partner both agree on the terms necessary to dissolve the marriage, the divorce can proceed smoothly. In Arizona, this is called an uncontested divorce and doesn’t require the stereotypical legal battle. You’ll still have to file a petition and complete the necessary paperwork for an uncontested divorce, but you can expect it to be a great deal more straightforward than a contested one.

Contested Divorce

On the other hand, if you and your partner disagree on the conditions of the divorce, like how to split your property or who will spend more time with the kids, you might be in for a long legal battle. Arizona law calls this a contested divorce. You may need to utilize negotiation and mediation, but if you cannot arrive at a decision with your soon-to-be ex, the courts will need to settle your differences in litigation.

Spousal Maintenance

If you dissolve your marriage, you or your partner might need to provide financial support to your former spouse. You may have also heard this called spousal maintenance, spousal support, or alimony. Family court will determine whether spousal maintenance is necessary to help one spouse maintain the standard of living to which they have become accustomed.

Spousal maintenance is typically temporary but may be permanent, depending on the details of the case. For instance, if one partner has been unemployed, the judge might issue temporary spousal support to help them readjust after the legal separation. If a spouse is disabled, permanent support may be necessary. Both spouses must submit documentation of income, property, and other pertinent financial information.

Property Division

Property Division

If you’re legally separating from a spouse and you share property, especially in a contested divorce, you will need legal guidance to divide the property according to community property laws in Arizona. For instance, the court must determine how to divide large assets like family homes or how to divide assets that need special attention, like stocks or debts. The goal of community property division is to ensure each spouse receives roughly half of all shared property. You will need to complete and file financial documents to ensure a fair division of assets.

In Arizona, events in a marriage like infidelity do not influence how assets will be split. However, if one of the partners was convicted of a crime that created damages for their spouse or kids (such as destruction of joint property), the judge would consider this in the division of assets. The court must analyze documentation of income and all assets to make this determination.

Marital Agreements

You might think that marital agreements are only for the wealthy, but that’s not the case. Drawing up a marital agreement is a way to stay organized and protect your assets before getting married. While most people choose prenuptial agreements, you can also protect your assets after marriage with a postnuptial agreement.

Prenuptial Agreements

Prenuptial Agreements

No one wants to think about getting a divorce before the wedding day. However, if you’re planning on getting married and want to predetermine the financial rights of each partner, you should consider drawing up a prenuptial agreement, called a prenup for short. These documents can help you and your partner avoid heated emotional conflicts in the event that you consider separating or filing for divorce.

For example, you can plan ahead for how you will divide property in the event of a divorce so you don’t battle about it in court years later. Prenuptial agreements are also very effective for protecting an individual’s separate property.

Postnuptial Agreements

Once you’re married, you and your spouse might consider a postnuptial agreement, nicknamed a postnup. Just like a prenup, a postnup lets you plan ahead about the division of assets. Even if you had a prenup before getting married, you could also get a prenup year into your marriage to update your previous plans. While many people choose a postnup if they’re considering separating, you can also draft a postnup while you’re in a stable relationship, just to stay organized for the future.

Domestic Violence

Every day, more than 20,000 phone calls are made to domestic abuse hotlines throughout the United States. Arizona law defines domestic violence as any form of harassment or assault among people in a specific relationship, including the following:

  • Spouse
  • Child
  • People who are or used to be in a romantic and/or sexual relationship
  • Parent
  • Grandchild
  • People who live in the same household

Instances of domestic violence can impact how a judge makes a decision about child custody. Family court judges work tirelessly to ensure children are in the best environment possible. If there were any instances of child abuse or domestic violence by one or both parents or in a household, it could affect the custody decision. Also, if there is proof that one parent falsely accused the other of child abuse, the judge will also take that into consideration when approving a custody order.

Individuals divorcing or separating from a spouse who has been abusive – or anyone who has experienced domestic violence – may wish to file for an order of protection while the proceedings occur. This can be done by petitioning for an order of protection.

Name Changes

We all go through transformative times in life, and there are many reasons you might want to change your name, like getting married or divorced. In order to legally change your name, you’re in for a relatively easy process, but you will have to complete and file an application with the court. You’ll also usually have to pay a filing fee, but you can apply for deferral if necessary.

Family Court Cases Involving Children

Family court cases involving children are often closely tied to divorce, but other parents who were never married may wish to determine issues like paternity, child custody, and the like.

Child Custody

Determining who will hold parenting time and decision-making rights regarding any children can be one of the most drawn-out parts of a contested divorce. However, even if you and your spouse agree regarding these determinations, you must have the parenting plan approved by the Arizona family court.

Child Custody

The court’s primary consideration is the well-being of the child, and it will consider all the facts of the case, including aspects like the parents’ work schedules, salaries, their relationships with their children, and potentially even the child’s wishes. You must submit financial documents and other custody documents to determine parenting time and decision-making rights

Child Support

Family courts try to minimize the damage to children during tough times in their families. When a marriage ends, and the couple has children together, the court typically orders the noncustodial parent (the parent who holds less parenting time) to contribute financially. If one partner has substantially more income than the other, they may have to pay child support. Again, financial documents and an application for child support are necessary, and paternity documents may be required.


Proof of paternity is often required for child custody and support cases to ensure the right individual is responsible for the child. While paternity is assumed at the time of birth when a married father is placed on the birth certificate, known as the presumption of paternity, other fathers may need to voluntarily accept paternity. If there is a question regarding paternity, either parent may request adjudication of paternity.


From family conflicts on the rise to a unique job opportunity presenting itself, there are endless reasons a teenager may seek independence from their legal guardians. Known as emancipation, the legal process of liberating oneself from family requires quite a few legal hurdles. You must be at least sixteen, file a petition, notify your guardians, and then wait for the court to evaluate whether or not they think emancipation is in your best interest.


If you want to take care of a child, but that child isn’t yours by birth, you will need to apply for guardianship. You can only do this if the parents are not able to fulfill their responsibilities as parents or if there are serious concerns about the child’s welfare, such as abuse in the household. Applying for guardianship involves several steps, but if you are a trustworthy individual with a clean background, it should be straightforward. You will need to file a petition and appear at a court proceeding where evidence is presented about the parents (if they’re living) and how fit you are to take care of the child.

You can also apply for guardianship of an adult in the event that they are temporarily or permanently incapacitated. For example, if someone is recovering from a serious brain injury and is unable to make decisions for themselves, you might consider filing for guardianship so you can do things for them, like sign contracts and make medical and health decisions. Similar paperwork must be submitted in this case.

Adoption and Termination of Parental Rights

If you want to adopt a child in Arizona, you must often locate a trustworthy adoption agency and go through a lengthy application process, including a home study in which a social worker addresses if you are a suitable parent. If the social worker finds you a good potential parent and a child is matched to our home, you will have a visit with them and may be supervised for a temporary period to ensure the adoption goes smoothly. Finally, you must submit adoption paperwork and attend a hearing in which a judge reviews the adoption process and makes the adoption official.

Another common family law case involving parenting is the termination of parental rights. This is a serious, irreversible process in which a parent loses custody and visitation of their child. Someone in the child’s life, like a teacher, doctor, therapist, or adult family member, might be concerned about concerning actions occurring at home, like the following:

  • Serious substance abuse in the home
  • A parent’s mental health problem prevents proper childcare
  • Physical, sexual, or emotional abuse of children
  • Long-term incarceration of a parent
  • Parental failure to adequately provide financial support
Child protection services (CPS) investigates reports of abuse and, if necessary, can initiate termination proceedings. Once parental rights are terminated, a relative like a grandparent, aunt, uncle, or other close family member often adopts the child. In this case, adoption paperwork again becomes necessary.

Juvenile Issues

No child should have to endure abuse or neglect or find themselves in a situation in which they have broken local or state laws. Unfortunately, the reality is that these things are quite common in Arizona, and the family court must address them. Juvenile issues include:

Child Neglect

Family courts, unfortunately, deal with a wide range of child neglect. For example, if parents do not give children the right clothes for freezing cold weather or raise children in an unsanitary environment, they might lose custody or face penalties for child neglect. Other types of neglect include failing to provide necessary medical care, leaving young children alone for extended periods of time, or emotionally abusing children.


Parents are legally required to enroll their children in school. If a child is not going to school, whether as a result of the parent’s actions or their own actions, the family court may step in. School neglect is called truancy, and Arizona law can intervene in many ways, including mandating counseling, mandatory attendance plans, fines for parents, or court-mandated interventions.

Juvenile Delinquency

Juvenile Delinquency

If a minor commits a crime, they will typically face different consequences than adults will since the courts want to teach young people how to become law-abiding citizens. For small crimes like shoplifting, they might have to go to educational programs, pay restitution, or do community service.

For more serious crimes, they might have to attend a juvenile detention center where adults focus on rehabilitation and preventing children from committing crimes in the future. A family court judge will determine the rehabilitative steps necessary depending on the child’s juvenile court history, the offense, and other factors.

Arizona Family Law Services

No matter what type of family law case you’re navigating, you can be sure there will be no shortage of paperwork required of you. It is essential to ensure all documents are drafted correctly and filed in a timely manner, which can be the most challenging part of many family court cases.

At Draft My Legal Docs, our experienced Arizona attorneys provide a range of family law services. We know how tense and high-stakes family law legal processes can be, so we’ll be by your side to draft and review crucial legal documents.

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Things I Wish I Knew Before Getting an Arizona Divorce

Things I Wish I Knew Before Getting an Arizona Divorce

Divorce is widely accepted as the most emotional family law case an individual can go through. From intense conflicts to constant court dates and legal fees, no amount of planning or experience can properly equip you for a divorce. However, there are useful tips out there that can help you better understand what you may have to go through. Here’s everything we wish we knew before going through an Arizona divorce.

Ten Things to Know Before an Arizona Divorce

Everyone knows that divorces can be complex, regardless of whether or not they are amicable. These complications can cause emotional, physical, and even financial stress. Fortunately, you are not the only person who has had to deal with the circumstances of a divorce. Below is a collection of tips from professionals who have gone through similar situations:

1. Conflicts Are Tough to Avoid

Because a divorce deals with intimate subjects and the separation of two people’s lives, conflicts can be incredibly hard to avoid. Dividing personal property, determining parenting time and decision-making rights, and assessing spousal support payments can all lead to disputes between separating spouses. If you are considering a divorce or are currently in the middle of one, you must be emotionally prepared to handle the different kinds of conflict that will arise. You should also be ready to have constructive conversations and make compromises. This can help to combat potential disputes and also aid you in getting the outcomes you hope for.

2. Determine What Is Important to You

Divorces bring up complex emotions and often leave you overwhelmed and exhausted. It’s essential that as soon as you are considering or presented with divorce, you take time to decide what is most important to you. Realistically, you are unlikely to retain everything you want, like sole custody, physical property, financial assets, and more, when you and your spouse separate. Determining which matters are most important to you and being ready to make compromises can help save a great deal of time and energy during your divorce. For example, when one spouse consistently disputes a judge’s decision because they believe they should get a replaceable piece of property, the process only becomes more grueling and expensive. Conversely, if retaining the family home is important to you, consider compromising on other issues to give you a better chance to reach your goals.

Suggested Reading: Arizona Divorce Guide-FAQs

3. You Will Need Records of Everything

Your divorce proceedings will address everything from where your child lives to who gets the family home. Because the court must legally separate the lives of a married couple, you’ll need to provide a large amount of your personal information to do so. Records of your marriage, your family information, your finances, and all your assets will need to be provided to determine an appropriate division of property and child responsibilities. If you have valuable separate property, you’ll need the proper documentation to demonstrate that you owned it prior to your marriage or purchased it after the date of separation.

You Will Need Records of Everything

4. You Should Get a Prenup or Postnup

Prenuptial agreements are often overlooked due to the falsely-held belief that they “promote” divorce. However, prenuptial agreements can be extremely helpful to protect both spouses’ separate property and are now commonly used across the state. In fact, most individuals who own valuable property and assets before they get married opt to create a prenup. This allows them to legally document the assets they owned prior to their marriage and protect them against Arizona’s community property laws. Businesses, inheritances, and valuable assets that you earned on your own should always be documented in the event that a divorce happens in the future.

Suggested Reading: Prenuptial Statistics

5. Be Prepared to Spend Money

While every divorce unfolds a little differently, you will need to spend money whether you’d like to or not. Consider the basic filing fee that comes with submitting a divorce petition, as well as the court and attorney fees that many individuals have to take on during their separation. In addition to fees from the actual divorce process, many separating spouses also need to find new places to live. Because of this, you may find yourself paying for a new house, an attorney, and a divorce all at once. This makes saving money whenever you can a crucial component of a smooth divorce. Fortunately, legal document services like Draft My Legal Docs can help you cut costs and, in many cases, may even help you avoid hiring a lawyer.

6. Start Separating Your Accounts

No matter how long your marriage may have lasted, there’s a strong chance that you and your spouse shared most financial assets. After one of you files for divorce, it is smart to begin separating yourselves in whatever ways you can. For example, you’ll need to create your own bank accounts, credit cards, and even your own phone, insurance, and medical plans. However, you should also note that there are some assets that you can’t touch until your divorce is finalized. These can include certain joint accounts, the family home, and other large assets that must be split according to community property laws.

Separating Your Accounts

7. Protect Your Assets

There are a collection of methods that can be used to protect your assets during an Arizona divorce. The methods that work best for you will likely depend on what kind of assets you have and whether or not they are separate property.

Some of the most useful tips for protecting your finances and assets:

  • Keep records of everything.
  • If you have valuable separate property, create a marital agreement that documents it.
  • Start creating your own financial accounts as soon as possible.
  • Have all assets evaluated by a professional.
  • Create your own list of marital assets and their values to compare to your spouse’s.
  • Make sure you have your own forms of insurance.
  • Remain amicable with your spouse.
  • Make sure both you and your spouse are documenting all assets and liabilities, as hiding them can result in severe court penalties.

8. Your Children Are the Most Important Case Factor

Arizona stipulates that the best interests of any children are always the top priority of a divorce agreement. This means that before you create a parenting time and decision-making rights agreement – and before a judge makes any decision regarding your plan – they must consider what is best for your child and how the divorce order will impact them. For this and many other reasons, it’s critical that you remember that your children are most likely struggling just as much as you. Try your best not to get lost in the chaos of conflicts and anger and instead focus on what you can do to prioritize your children in and out of court. Otherwise, a judge will end up doing it for you.

Your Children Are the Most Important Case Factor

9. You Need Healthy Coping Mechanisms

Divorces involve a massive amount of change. From leaving your home to separating your family, it is an absolute necessity that you find healthy coping mechanisms to process your divorce. Unfortunately, many people going through a divorce end up becoming so involved in their case that they forget to take care of themselves properly. Whether it’s therapy that gives you the outlet you need or you take up yoga once a week, finding healthy ways to release your stress during a divorce is critical. If you have children, it’s essential that you do the same for them. Healthy coping mechanisms can help to relieve some of the intense anxiety that divorce brings on.

10. There Is No “Winning”

Contentious divorces can bring out the worst in people. For that reason, throughout your divorce, you need to remind yourself that there is no “winning” in this situation. Remember, almost everything you obtain throughout your marriage is community property and must be split fairly. Your time with your children must also be divided equally, provided your child’s other parent is not abusive or otherwise unfit. Realistically, there is no winner in this situation – only two sides who are trying to make things work. It’s in your best interest to keep things amicable whenever possible and work constructively.

Arizona Divorce Advice for Women

While Arizona divorce laws are gender-neutral when it comes to decision-making, the general process of dissolving a marriage can sometimes differ for a woman. Here are a few helpful tips for women who have found themselves at the end of their marriages.

You Are Allowed to Stand Up for Yourself

Unfortunately, many women are unfairly stereotyped as “crazy” when they are direct, act decisively about what they want, or set boundaries. Because of this, women are often afraid to truly stick up for themselves in the courtroom or negotiating table because they don’t want to deal with the stigma. It is imperative that every woman stands up for herself during a divorce. Otherwise, your soon-to-be ex may try to take advantage of your indecision.

Women Going Through a Divorce

Don’t Be Afraid to Request Spousal Support

Many women make sacrifices when they get married. One of the most common of these sacrifices includes quitting your job or dropping out of school to care for your family. However, in most cases, when a mother does this, the father is able to continue pursuing their career and becomes the breadwinner. This can put a mother in a vulnerable position if a divorce occurs. If you made sacrifices for your household during marriage and are now unsure whether you can care for yourself, you should consider requesting spousal support.

Find Ways to Become Independent Again

Because divorces legally end a relationship, both individuals involved often find themselves having to start over. From creating a new bank account to finding a new home, you’ll need to become independent quickly after your divorce decree becomes final. This can be especially difficult for women, who often dedicate years of their lives to caring for their families. If you are going through a divorce, it’s important that you start finding ways to reclaim your independence.

Arizona Divorce Advice for Men

Divorces are often very different for men than they are for women. If you are a man who is going through the divorce process in Arizona, you should keep these tips in mind.

You Have Rights to Your Children Too

Many fathers worry that they will lose child custody simply because they are not the mother. Remind yourself that you have just as much right to your children as their mother and have the right to request equal parenting time and decision-making rights. To receive joint custody and shared rights of your children, you’ll need to demonstrate that it is in the best interests of your children.

Protect Your Finances and Property

Because Arizona is a community property state, there is a chance that your soon-to-be-ex may try and take advantage of your shared property rights. In an Arizona divorce, you must take extra steps to protect your separate assets and ensure they do not become involved in the property division process. All property that you owned before your marriage is separate, meaning your wife can’t attempt to ask for it during your divorce. In addition, inheritances, gifts, and some other assets may be separate.

Don’t Isolate Yourself

Whether it’s because they don’t wish to deal with their emotions or they don’t feel they have the time or resources to do so, many men do not process their emotions properly. This often means you’re at risk for poor coping mechanisms which can affect your mental and physical health. While a divorce can be difficult, you have to remember that it is not the end. Remember to stay in touch with your friends and family and keep your loved ones close. Good things can still come out of tough times.

File Your Family Law Documents

Family Law Services for Arizona Divorce

While divorce may seem daunting now, it’s important to remind yourself that you do have the strength, determination, and resources necessary to get through your divorce. Draft My Legal Docs provides document services that can help you handle your divorce case with ease. Our services include document preparation and drafting tailored to the unique needs of our Arizona clients. Contact Draft My Legal Docs today to learn how our professional family law services can help you through your Arizona divorce.

Documents Needed to File for Divorce in Arizona

Divorce Documents Needed to File in Arizona

Which divorce documents are needed in order to move forward? Making the decision to end a marriage is never easy, even if you have an amicable relationship with your soon-to-be-former partner. The process is very involved, it can take a great deal of time to complete each necessary step, and the paperwork can be overwhelming. It is helpful to have resources and support from trustworthy sources as you file for and finalize your divorce.

Family court cases will vary based on the specifics of each case, so our services are personalized for your needs. Having the support of a legal team to analyze your documents and ensure they are correct can take some of the stress of divorce away, eliminate the need for expensive attorney fees, and help you complete the Arizona divorce process on your own.

Arizona Divorce Basics

The process of filing for divorce varies from state to state, so it is important to understand what is required in your state. Arizona has a residency requirement that specifies at least one of the spouses must have lived in the state for a minimum of 90 days before a divorce petition can be filed. There are also two types of divorce available in Arizona: contested and uncontested.

An uncontested divorce occurs when both spouses are in full agreement regarding topics such as property division and parenting decisions. Contested divorce proceedings occur when one spouse does not agree to the divorce or when spouses cannot agree on its terms. Contested divorces are often more challenging to finalize and require things like mediation and more court involvement. Regardless of how your divorce proceeds, it is important to be aware of the documents you need to file for divorce in Arizona.

What You Need to File for Divorce in Arizona

Which Divorce Documents Do You Need to File in Arizona?

The process of completing a divorce in Arizona requires paperwork for each step, from the initial dissolution request to a motion to amend if you need to change anything once the divorce is finalized. It can be difficult to keep track of all of the paperwork, especially if your divorce encounters any delays or problems, so having legal support can be invaluable. A legal document service can provide you with the documents you need, verify that everything is correct, and assist you through every step of the process.

Documents to Begin the Divorce Process

Once you make the decision to file for divorce, you will have to petition the Arizona courts to get the process started. This process is called the petition and is completed by a single spouse, in most cases. There are several key documents that must be filled out during the petition phase, and they are available in a single packet that will be filed. Required documents may change, depending on if there are children involved in the marriage or not.

Required documents include:

  • Sensitive Data Cover Sheet – This document is where any preliminary information, such as name, age, gender, and address will be listed. Individuals who wish to have their location protected, perhaps in the event of abuse, do not have to include their address on this form.
  • Summons – This document lets the other spouse know that the initial suit has been filed. They will have an opportunity to respond to this filing.
  • Preliminary Injunction – This document informs the other spouse of the stipulations they must follow while the divorce proceedings are ongoing. Certain rules include not concealing earnings, not selling or giving away shared property, and not harassing the other spouse or family.
  • Petition for Dissolution of a Non-Covenant Marriage Without Children – This is the official document that will be filed with the courts. It includes all of the necessary information about the marriage, including income, shared and separate property, debts, and tax information.
  • Petition for Dissolution of a Non-Covenant Marriage With Minor Children – This is similar to the previous document, but it requires additional information about the ages of the children, any history of domestic violence, and requests for child support.
What You Need to File for Divorce in Arizona
There may be other documents necessary during the petition process as your divorce proceedings begin, such as notifying both parties of their rights surrounding health insurance and creditors. Once the petition has been filed and the other spouse has been informed, they must file a response. Every document is not required for every divorce, so it is important to have legal guidance to ensure you complete the paperwork with correct and up-to-date information and submit it in a timely manner.

Consent Decree

Some divorce proceedings are relatively simple and do not require extensive mediation, motions, and amended agreements. This is most common in uncontested divorces, where both parties have reached an agreement about major hurdles like child support, asset division, and spousal maintenance. Once all of these agreements are reached, the spouses can file a consent decree to have their divorce finalized by a judge with no additional steps.

Default Decree

In some cases, the spouse who did not file for divorce, called the respondent, fails to respond within the correct period of time. When this happens, the petitioner can file a request for default, which gives the respondent an additional 10 days to respond. If they still fail to respond or don’t appear for the divorce proceedings within that time frame, then the case can be decided without their input. In these circumstances, the divorce decree will follow what was outlined in the initial filing.

Motion for Rule 12 Interview of Minor Child(ren)

Divorce can be a difficult and emotional process even under the best circumstances, but it can be especially challenging for children. Ideally, they would be able to have a voice when parenting time arrangements are being discussed. In some circumstances, a Motion for Rule 12 Interview of Minor Child(ren), must be filed for an interview of this variety to take place.

Parenting Plan

If there are children involved in the divorce, a parenting plan must be established. The parenting plan includes important details about how the child’s care will be handled, including issues with parenting time and legal decision making. This document also outlines which parent will have legal decision making abilities for the children, how much will be required for child support each month, and how the time with each parent will be divided. The parents are given an opportunity to make these decisions on their own, but if they are unable to, then the final determination will be made by a judge.

Arizona Property Settlement Agreement

One of the more challenging aspects of a divorce is determining how the shared assets of a former couple will be divided. Any property or assets that were gained during the marriage are considered community property, so they are subject to division. If one or both spouses had certain assets, like homes, vehicles, or stocks, prior to the marriage, then that is considered separate property and cannot be divided. A Property Settlement Agreement clearly outlines what assets and property are involved, whether they are community or separate property, and how they will be divided.

Finalizing a divorce in Arizona requires a significant amount of paperwork and documentation for things like asset division, earnings reports, and determining how children will be cared for. You can complete this process yourself by filing all of the necessary paperwork with the Arizona courts in your county, but it may be in your best interest to receive assistance from a licensed attorney.

Finalizing a divorce

Working with an experienced family law attorney can be costly, but their advice and input can be invaluable. If you require legal assistance but do not want to pay extensive attorney fees, you can rely on a legal document service for help with drafting, preparing, and filing the documents you need.

Arizona Divorce Document FAQs

The specific documents you need will vary based on the details of your divorce case. Every divorce proceeding will require a Petition for Dissolution of Non-Covenant Marriage, either with or without minor children. Both parties will also be required to complete a Sensitive Data Sheet. The petitioner will file a summons and preliminary injunction. Other documents, like a Consent Decree or Default Decree, may be required based on the specific details of your divorce.

Suggested Reading: Arizona Divorce FAQs
Do You Need an Attorney to File for Divorce in Arizona?
You can file for divorce without the assistance of an attorney in Arizona. All the documents you need for any family court case, including the Petition for Dissolution, Consent Decree, and Parenting Plan, are available online. However, working with an attorney can make the divorce process easier to manage and help ensure that all of the necessary paperwork is filed correctly and efficiently.

If you would like legal advice and guidance, but do not want to commit to working with an attorney, legal document services can help you through every step of the process.

What Are the Rules for Divorce in Arizona?
The primary requirement for a divorce to be granted in Arizona is the residency requirement. One of the spouses must have resided in Arizona for at least 90 days prior to the initial petition being filed. There is no requirement for both parties to remain in the state once the divorce process has begun unless they share minor children. If a parent wants to relocate and take their minor child(ren) with them during the divorce proceedings, it must be agreed upon by both parties.
How Much Does Divorce Cost in Arizona?
The process of filing for and finalizing divorce in Arizona can be costly. Each document that must be filed, such as a Petition for Dissolution, Default Decree, or Property Settlement Agreement, will likely have a fee associated with it. These fees can vary depending on the county you live in, so you will need to verify any prices with the court. You may also have additional fees and costs if you work with an attorney or if you have a case that is particularly difficult and requires several filings.
How Do I Start a Divorce in Arizona?
There are several steps that must be followed for a divorce to be finalized in Arizona. To get the divorce process started, you must first file a Petition for Dissolution of Non-Covenant Marriage. There are two versions of this document, one for marriages with no shared children and the other for marriages with shared minor children. Either version will require you to provide information regarding earnings, identifying information, and requests for how assets will be divided. A Petition for Dissolution of Marriage with Minor Child(ren) will also require information about the children and requests for how parenting time, visitation, and child support will be handled.
What Is the Easiest Way to Get a Divorce in Arizona?
Finalizing a divorce always involves unique challenges and hurdles, whether they are financial, legal, or emotional. A petition must be filed, assets must be divided, and parenting decisions must be made if children are involved. The divorce process that is easiest is an uncontested divorce, when both parties agree on the details of their property division, asset division, and parenting time, where applicable. When a former couple is able to finalize all of the necessary agreements and file a Consent Decree, then their divorce petition will be granted with minimal additional steps.

Find the Proper AZ Divorce Documents

When you have made the difficult decision to end your marriage, it is essential that you have the support and resources you need to make the process as easy as possible. Working with a family law document service ensures any questions are answered, you have the correct paperwork, and everything is filed correctly.


An Arizona Parent’s Guide to Successful Co-Parenting

Families who are recently divorced often find it hard to settle into co-parenting. For many families, what once was seemingly easy to do from within one home, one unit, and with one united force becomes difficult and riddled with disputes and arguments. But with a little work and determination to keep the focus on the kids, you can provide your children with the security, stability, and parental relationships they need to thrive.

Sometimes, though, putting relationship problems aside following a divorce isn’t always as simple as it sounds, and resentment can be a hard obstacle to overcome. Having to see your ex-partner when dropping off or picking up your child and having to act cordially and make agreeable decisions can be a challenge. However, with a little work, you can learn to remain calm, be consistent, and experience successful conflict resolution to make joint custody work for everyone. Oftentimes, you can even set the standard for your ex and become an example they will follow going forward.

Why Healthy Co-Parenting Is So Important

The emotional well-being of a child is dependent on the quality of the relationship children have with both of their divorced parents. Unless one parent is unfit or is involved in substance abuse or domestic violence, or has another issue, it is important for children to have both parents playing an active role in their lives, even if one parent doesn’t agree. Realizing that the best way to make sure your child has all their needs met is to help them maintain a close and enduring relationship with both parents.

When kids recognize they are more important than the conflict between their parents, they won’t feel responsible for the divorce, like kids often do. They will believe in your love for them prevailing, regardless of anything else that changes.

Healthy Co-Parenting Is Important

When co-parenting is done properly, children benefit in the following ways:

  • They feel secure and confident in the love of both of their parents, adjust better to the new living environment, and have higher self-esteem.
  • They have a better understanding of problem-solving. When children see their parents getting along and working together despite their breakup, they learn effective and peaceful problem-solving skills.
  • They have a good, solid example to follow in their future relationships.
  • They experience positive mental and emotional well-being and are more emotionally healthy. Children who have parents that successfully co-parent are less likely to develop. Issues like ADHD, depression, and anxiety.

Keys to Successful Co-Parenting in Arizona

The golden rule of successful co-parenting is to learn to separate your personal relationship with your ex from the interactions of co-parenting. Some parents find it easier to reinvent the relationship with their ex. Start over with a completely new relationship that is only based on the child’s well-being rather than either one of you. The most important foundation of co-parenting is putting your children’s needs before your own needs and putting your child’s emotions before your own, as well.

The following provides some tips for effective co-parenting:

Set Anger and Hurt Feelings Aside

Set resentment and anger aside. These emotions must take a back seat to your children’s needs. It is hard to do this, but learning to work in an obliging way with your ex is an important component of co-parenting. Making decisions together and interacting in a positive manner for the kids is vital to successful co-parenting. Try to remember that co-parenting is about your children’s happiness, well-being, and stability. It is not about your or your ex’s feelings. Your feelings don’t have to dictate how you behave. Let what is best for your children motivate you.

Never Vent to Your Child

It is important for parents to get their feelings out, but it is crucial to leave your kids out of your venting sessions about your child’s other parent. Avoid speaking negatively about your ex to your child in general. They have a right to have a loving relationship with both of their parents without feeling like one parent wronged the other parent.

Their relationship with both of you should be free of influence. Seek therapy if necessary or talk with friends or even a pet. Exercise also allows for a healthy outlet to let off pent-up frustration.

Focus on Your Children

Focus on Your Children

When negative feelings start to swell up inside of you, refocus your attention on your children. Look at photos of your kids if it helps you to calm down and remember it’s about your children, not about you. Take a moment to engage in a positive activity with your children as an outlet for your attention.

Don’t Put Your Children in the Middle of the Fight

It may take many years for you to let go of all the resentment and hurt you may feel following divorce, but the necessity to compartmentalize those feelings is essential to your children’s well-being. Remember, these are your problems and issues, not your children’s. Make a promise not to use your child as a pawn in your emotional battles against your ex.

Furthermore, don’t ask your children to tell their other parent something conflicting. This puts them right in the middle of the fight and forces them to feel like they need to pick a side and betray one of their parents. They should never feel like they must pick one parent over the other because of the way one parent feels about the other. Keep your children out of your relationship issues by speaking to your ex in private.

Improving Communication with Your Co-Parent

Get in the mindset that you’re going to communicate with your ex for the well-being of your child, and everything you say to them will be for that purpose only. Consider everything you are going to say through the filter of your child. Ask yourself, “What consequences will this have for my child?”

When communicating with your ex, keep the focus on the child. If your ex veers from that, make a conscious effort to veer the attention back to the primary focus of discussing the child for the betterment of your child’s well-being. Any other communication is unnecessary. Establishing a conflict-free rapport with your ex is the main goal of your interactions with your ex.

Tips for better co-parenting communication:

  • Use a business-style tone – Approach your communication efforts with your ex as you would a business relationship and speak or write as you would to a colleague. Be cordial, respectful, and neutral, and try to relax and speak evenly without emotion.
  • Make requests – Rather than making demands or telling your ex what to do, try making a request in the form of a question. For example, “Do you think you could pick up the kids after school?” or “Would you be willing to get dinner for the kids tonight?”
  • Listen to your ex – One of the most critical components of effective communication is listening, and even if there are disagreements between you and your ex, convey that you have understood their viewpoint. This does not mean you have to approve or agree, but you can establish respect and boundaries by listening to their opinion.
  • Use self-control – You will have to communicate with your ex at least until your child turns 18 or longer. Refrain from overreacting when your ex pushes your buttons and avoid pushing their buttons yourself.
  • Make a commitment to consistency – Establish a frequent line of communication to send a united front message to your children.
  • Stay kid-focused – If a conversation with your ex digresses to a topic that is not about your children, re-focus it so that it is.
  • Be mindful – Stay centered on your goals during the conversation. Learn to recognize the stressors that can turn the tables from a calm and productive conversation, and when you recognize them, stay conscious not to let the stress take over.

Co-Parenting Techniques for Productive Communication

Effective and productive communication with your child’s other parent takes practice. It won’t come easy overnight. Try using some of these communication prompts and conflict resolution tactics to fast-track the progress of your efforts.

Co-Parenting Techniques for Productive Communication

Ask the Other Parent’s Opinion

This is a tried-and-true technique that can optimize positive communication between you and your co-parent. Pick an issue you don’t feel very strongly about to avoid a heated topic and ask for your ex’s opinion and input. Then listen. This shows them that you value their opinion and can lay a foundation of respect and trust for future discussion of more important issues down the road.

Offer an Apology

If you make a mistake or parenting error, apologize upfront and do so sincerely. Even if it’s something that happened long ago that you never made amends over, offer an apology. While apologizing can be powerful when delivered properly, it’s the forgiveness that can move the co-parenting relationship to another level.


Life is chaotic, and things happen. Plans don’t always work out like they were meant to, especially when dealing with kids. If something affects your schedule or impairs your day that has to do with your ex’s parenting time, let it slide. Show flexibility and be an example of that so that the next time you have a conflict that interrupts your parenting time, they will be more likely to let it slide, as well.

Realize Your Common Purpose

Remember that you are both only human and are doing the best you can. In fact, you’re both doing the exact same thing and have a similar purpose in life. You’re raising the same kids within the same community and with the same hardships and external factors. Be understanding of your ex’s efforts and have empathy for their trials as you would want them to do for you.

Maintaining a Co-Parenting Schedule in Arizona

Consistency is key in co-parenting. Having a predetermined schedule that the child can count on and look forward to is important in establishing stability for the child. There are co-parenting apps available that you can download that allow you to communicate without having to always speak directly about schedules, activities, and times.

Input events on the calendar that both of you can view to stay on the same page regarding parenting time. You can make notes to the other parent, and there are other features of these apps that can help both parents stay informed and on the same page with upcoming activities or changes to the schedule ahead of time.

Types of Co-Parenting

Just as there are many types of families and children, there are also different types of co-parenting styles. The three main types that are most often identified are parallel parenting (the most common type of co-parenting), conflicted co-parenting, and cooperative co-parenting. A description of each is below.

Parallel Co-Parenting

This style of co-parenting involves parents who have low conflict, but this may be because they have little communication. They emotionally disengage from one another, and one’s parenting has little to do with the others. They basically are parenting their children within two different realms, and those realms are unassociated with each other. Both households operate independently of the other. There is little consistency between the two homes, which is because the parents do not communicate much, if at all.

Conflicted Co-Parenting

This style of co-parenting is conflicted, as its name suggests, by poor communication and the failure of both parents to separate their emotions from their child’s well-being. This is a harmful style of co-parenting for children because the level of conflict that remains in the family results in negative emotional effects on the children.

Cooperative Co-Parenting

Cooperative co-parenting is the ideal type of co-parenting. It is the most beneficial for children because it is characterized by joint coordination of scheduling and parenting time, joint planning, and flexibility. It also provides parental support for each parent from the other parent. This conflict-free scenario involves parents resolving their differences cordially and without effect on the children. This is the best style of co-parenting because it fosters resilience in the children.

Healthy Co-Parenting in Arizona Is Possible

Healthy Co-Parenting in Arizona Is Possible

With hard work and focus, parents can learn to co-parent at a level that is close to or at the cooperative co-parenting goal. It does take a conscious effort, but it does get easier over time. Just like any skill, with practice, your co-parenting abilities will get better with time. Don’t give up and keep your focus on the kids, and you will prevail as an effective co-parent.Legal document services in Arizona are here to help you better understand your case and gain quick access to the relevant documents you need.


*Editor’s Note: This article was originally published Mar 30, 2018 and has been updated June 23, 2023

Legal Document Drafting Services

Legal Document Services Vs. Paralegals

Filing any legal documents can be stressful without the right guidance. Many people tend to think that the only way to begin a legal case requires help from an attorney or paralegal. However, using a document filing service can help simplify, expedite, and file your documents just as well as a paralegal can, if not better.

What Is a Legal Document Preparation Service?

A legal document preparation service is an organization that helps individuals understand and file different kinds of legal documents. The Arizona Supreme Court authorizes only Certified Legal Document Preparers to offer services to the general public.

Without this accreditation, a legal document preparation service that drafts legal documents for a person or a business without the guidance of an attorney is practicing law without a license. The only objective of the Arizona Supreme Court’s certification and oversight of the people and businesses creating legal documents is to safeguard the public.

For example, if you want to file for a divorce but need help figuring out the process, you may need to seek assistance with your filing. By contacting a legal document preparation service, you can get the necessary help you need for filing your Petition for Dissolution of Marriage with the added legal oversight provided by certified legal professionals.

An attorney is not legally necessary for filing these petitions, but the added guidance from a legal document preparation service can help you feel secure in the legal legitimacy of your documents.

Legal Document Services

Legal Document Services

Typically, document preparation services in Arizona work within family law matters. Family law consists of issues between individuals in a relationship with one another, either by blood or marriage. These matters often involve changing relationships or marital statuses, but all involve familial relationships.

Depending on the situation, certain documents must be filed to accomplish one of these relationship changes.

Some of the most common document filings related to family law include:

Divorce Filings

The decision to file for divorce is rarely easy, but sometimes, it can be necessary. The first step in getting a divorce begins with filing a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage. These filings are submitted by a petitioner, and to proceed, the respondent (the other spouse) must be notified of the filing.

If all issues in the case are agreed upon by both parties, the case may move forward once the parties file a consent decree. The filing party may request a default judgment if the Petition was submitted, served to the opposing party, and no response has been submitted in the given time frame.

For covenant marriages, this process can be a bit more complicated as supplemental information and directives are required to continue the divorce. When seeking a divorce, a petitioner in a covenant marriage must prove the other party committed an act that disrupted the marriage, such as adultery, and that marriage counseling efforts have not resolved that dispute. From there, the Petition and evidence can be submitted and the proceedings can continue.

Suggested Reading: Arizona Divorce Guide

Custody Filings

To create a plan for child custody, known as legal decision-making and parenting time in Arizona, parents must file an extensive list of legal documents that outline their custody plans. The Sensitive Data Cover Form with Children, summons, Affidavit Regarding Minor Children, Order and Notification to Attend Parenting Education or Information Classes, and a Parenting Plan should all be completed by divorcing and unmarried parents, respectively.

Creating a unique parenting plan for your particular situation is recommended, allowing parents to create a visitation schedule that suits their needs and the needs of their child. Parents who are divorcing should also fill out a Notice of Your Rights Regarding Health Insurance Coverage, a Preliminary Injunction, a Notice Regarding Creditors, a Petition for Dissolution of a Non-Covenant Marriage with Minor Children, and a Petition for Legal Separation with Minor Children.

Requests for Child Support

Before beginning the process of filing for child support, parents must confirm paternity and compile documents first. The second parent’s name, Social Security number, birth certificates for each child, and, if available, their most recent employer must also be provided.

Any children mentioned on the application should have as much documentation as possible. Birth records, copies of paternity orders, copies of support orders from the past or present, a list of payments given to you personally, and adoption documents are all relevant and should be included.

If you have ever married, you must present copies of any marriage certificates or any divorce judgments you have regarding any marriages. Once all the necessary identification information is collected, you can fill out an application for Title IV-D Child Support Assistance.

The documentation you collect about you, your co-parent, and your child or children are necessary for these filings. You must fill out a separate sheet for every individual child with your application for assistance if you are requesting benefits for multiple children who share the same father. Once completed, this information can be sent to Arizona Child Support Services.

Suggested Reading: Ways to Avoid a Child’s Split Loyalty

Order Modifications

For some custody or support situations, modifying a pre-existing order is necessary to make the situation sustainable. When parents desire to change legal decision-making and parenting time, they can file a Petition to Change Legal Decision-Making, Parenting Time arrangements set by the court and Child Support systems.

According to Arizona law, even if neither parent requests a change in child support, family courts must readjust it whenever the current parenting time situation is altered. However, being proactive about updating these orders by submitting your order modifications is the best way to efficiently get these orders changed.

Name Changes

Name changes can be initiated for several reasons, ranging from divorce to a requested identity change. As an adult, the necessary forms to complete to apply for a name change include an Order of Name Change, a Petition for Change of Name (also known as an Application for Change of Name), and a Notice of Hearing Regarding an Application for Change of Name.

If the court believes that a name change would impact the rights of someone else, such as a debtor or the co-parent of a shared child, it may not be permitted. It is critical to understand that even after changing your name, you remain the same person. You will just go by a different name, but you will still be subject to the same legal duties and obligations.

Differences Between a Paralegal and a Document Handling Service

Attorney reviewing legal paperwork

Under the direction of a lawyer, paralegals may assist with document preparation, filing, organizing evidence and documentation for review by an attorney, and synthesizing reports for trial preparation. They may also aid in fostering interactions with clients, witnesses, attorneys, and other parties associated with a case.

One of the most important things to keep in mind while hiring and working with a paralegal is that they must be supervised by lawyer during all stages of their work. In addition, paralegals cannot give you legal advice; only an attorney is qualified to do so.

Legal document preparers are specially qualified to assist you in appropriately filling out and filing your legal paperwork without the oversight of an attorney, though some may be attorneys themselves. In this capacity, they are unable to provide you with legal counsel or act as your advocate in court.

A legal document preparation service can help you with a variety of legal issues, including divorce filing, changing child support obligations, and more. Your document preparer will be aware of their limitations due to their training and will, if necessary, recommend you to an experienced attorney.

Should I Hire a Paralegal for Divorce?

Legally speaking, you do not need to have a paralegal or lawyer assist you with the divorce process. Every situation is different, and understanding what makes a document preparation service different from hiring a paralegal is essential to decide what route is best for you.

Some of the benefits that come from hiring a legal document service include the following:

Cost Efficiency

Lawyers, and by extension paralegals, are all paid by the hour. This means that the longer it takes for them to analyze your situation and help you file your documents, the more you end up paying for their services. Document filing services can help streamline this process, which can help save you money long-term.

Accuracy of Filings

Trying to navigate your filings alone can lead to glaring mistakes that get your information either dismissed or completely thrown out. Hiring a legal document service is best for making sure that you accurately represent your claims to the court, as they can ensure your filings are reviewed by legal professionals before they are officially submitted.

Easy Navigation of the Process

Ease of filing goes hand in hand with the accuracy of your filings. One of the reasons filing these documents can be so stressful is how tricky they are to navigate. With help from an expert legal document filing service, you can be sure that any minor missteps or mistakes are properly addressed before they are finally submitted.


For those that need to handle multiple document filings for the same cause or those who want to accomplish multiple different legal tasks, a legal document filing service can assist you with multiple orders at once. This can further streamline the filing process. By contrast, if you choose to work with a paralegal to manage multiple filings, the price for these services could become hard to manage.

Suggested Reading: Do I Need a Lawyer to Get a Divorce


Disadvantages to Document Filing Services

The only disadvantage of choosing a document preparer instead of a lawyer is that their services are limited to document preparation, case handling, and case management. In this regard, you may require legal assistance if your filing is complex or has special problems. A legal document preparer is expressly prohibited from providing legal advice or responding to inquiries regarding your legal options. A legal document preparer is unable to act as your legal representative in court.

While a paralegal may provide you with the quick help of a lawyer, they are also limited in their abilities. Document filing services are much more straightforward, cost-effective, and user-friendly compared to hiring a paralegal. In situations where more legal help is needed, a legal document preparer can refer you to a lawyer to help resolve your issue.

File Your Family Law Documents with Draft My Legal Docs

File Your Family Law Documents

Filing legal documents requires attention to detail, comprehensive information gathering, and an understanding of how these filings work. Fortunately, legal document services can help guide you through the filing process, taking some of the stress that comes with these decisions off of your shoulders.

At Draft My Legal Docs, we can help you put together and submit your legal filings, ensuring that they are legally sound before they get sent out. For more information on our services, contact us today.

Cheap AZ Divorce

Is Divorce Expensive in Arizona?

Obtaining an inexpensive divorce in Arizona can be possible if the right circumstances are met. If you and your spouse are divorcing, you can avoid an expensive court hearing with help from legal document services like Draft My Legal Docs. Here is everything you need to know about how divorce works in Arizona, so you can ensure you achieve the results you want at the lowest cost.

Requirements for Getting a Divorce in Arizona

Arizona is what’s known as a “no-fault” state. That means that in Arizona, couples do not need to provide a reason for divorce beyond the fact that they no longer get along and do not wish to remain married. This is known as “irreconcilable differences” and means one spouse does not have to be found “at fault” for the marriage’s dissolving.

However, there are residency and filing requirements. For instance, if neither you nor your spouse has lived in the state for 90 days, you can’t file for a divorce in Arizona. In addition, the petition for dissolution must be filed with the clerk of the court, and a copy must then be served to your soon-to-be ex by someone other than yourself, including a process server or sheriff. Keep in mind that a process server will charge a fee, while a sheriff can do so for free.

If your partner chooses to contest the divorce, they must file a response. If they do not choose to contest, they can begin working with you to settle the terms of your divorce or simply enter no response at all. This may result in a default judgment, but you must wait 60 days from the service date to finalize the divorce. However, with court schedules and other requirements, most divorces will not be settled this quickly.

Expense of Getting a Divorce in Arizona

Typical Costs for Divorce

In 2022, Forbes explained that the median cost for a divorce in the United States was $7,000, while the national average was much higher, ranging between $15,000 to $20,000. This may seem daunting, but it doesn’t mean that you need to spend a great deal of money to get divorced in Arizona.

The cost of your divorce will depend on a few essential factors, such as whether your spouse contests the divorce, whether you choose to hire an attorney, filing costs, court costs, the cost of a process server, and whether there are any complexities like child custody, child support, complicated assets, and more that will result in additional time in court. In general, the more agreeable you and your spouse are – and the fewer complications that must be settled in the courtroom setting – the fewer expenses you’ll accrue during the divorce process. Take a look at some of the most common costs of divorcing to learn what you can expect.

When you first file for a divorce, you have to pay a fee for the “petition for dissolution of marriage.” Such a fee will be quickly followed up by a second payment if you use a process server to serve the petition to your spouse. Women filing for divorce also may file paperwork to restore their maiden name, and parents filing will need to file paperwork to attend a parent education class so they can determine aspects like child custody and child support.

The bulk of the cost of divorce comes from attorney fees, especially if the divorce is contentious and must be settled in a courtroom. It’s difficult to determine exactly how much a divorce lawyer would cost in a particular situation, as every divorce is different. So, too, is every attorney’s pricing structure. However, divorces that cannot be solved amicably without lengthy litigation can cost tens of thousands of dollars above and beyond the cost of a simple divorce in Arizona.

Uncontested Divorce

As mentioned, an uncontested divorce occurs when your spouse does not contest the dissolution of the marriage. They can do so by working with you to compromise on the terms of the split or by not responding to the petition for dissolution and allowing the court to issue a default judgment in your favor. If you and your spouse are working together to create a mutually agreeable divorce agreement, you can avoid spending a great deal of time in a courtroom at a series of divorce hearings.

However, this may be easier said than done, which is why it’s so common for divorcing spouses to end up in court.

Unless you have a prenuptial agreement that has pre-determined the terms of your divorce for you, you and your spouse will need to decide the following:

  • How to divide your assets and debts according to Arizona’s community property laws
  • Whether either spouse should receive spousal maintenance (alimony)
  • The amount of parenting time and legal decision-making rights both parents will have if there are children involved
  • Child support payments, if there are children involved
If you and your spouse agree on each of the aspects above, you can file a consent decree and avoid spending time in court other than to have the judge approve your divorce agreement and issue the final divorce order. Uncontested divorces are almost always less expensive than contested divorces for this reason.

Contested Divorce

A contested divorce, where one spouse does not agree to the divorce or the terms of the divorce, will often become more expensive because the spouses often feel the need to hire attorneys to navigate this more complex case. While not all contested divorce cases end in a contentious court battle, this is one possible outcome. This process can take much longer than an uncontested divorce and often involves other decision-making strategies that can require additional funds.

Before resorting to a court hearing, divorcing spouses who need assistance coming to an agreement typically undergo mediation with an objective, third-party mediator. Mediation is cheaper than going to court, and the goal is for it to end with both spouses in agreement without the need for litigation. However, mediation can cost up to $500 per hour, and if it is unsuccessful, the couple will still need to attend divorce hearings.

Do I Need a Lawyer to Get a Divorce in AZ?

Do you need an attorney to get a divorce? When it comes to calculating the cost of a divorce, most of that cost can be attributed to hiring one or more attorneys for the duration of the process. Court costs and document filing fees are much less expensive than the alternative of paying an attorney for several months of help, as even an uncontested divorce can take at least three months to settle properly. It is not only possible to divorce in Arizona without an attorney, but it is also much less expensive. For example, if you and your spouse believe that you can settle your differences without needing a lawyer’s help, you may only need to pay the basic filing fees.

However, it’s important to note that divorce is a complex issue, and there are a great number of equally complex documents that must be drafted and filed in a timely manner. In addition, divorce tends to be an emotionally charged, exhausting, and stressful affair, and divorce can be taxing on even the most prepared individuals. To ensure the divorce process goes as quickly and smoothly as possible, it is essential to ensure all documents are completed in full and submitted to the court on time.

Controlling the Cost of Divorce

Inexpensive Divorce in Arizona

In Arizona, a divorce doesn’t need to be expensive or time-consuming. While it’s impossible to plan for everything, and every relationship will have unique complexities when it’s time to finalize the divorce, there are some ways you can reduce the cost of your

Be Cooperative

Being willing to listen and cooperate can go a long way in making sure the marriage ends peacefully and inexpensively. While this does require cooperation from both you and your ex-spouse, kindness can prevent your case from becoming a court hearing. Consider making a list of all the things you and your spouse agree on, then calmly discussing the others causing disagreement. If you can peacefully negotiate issues like the division of property and parenting time, you can save yourself the costs of multiple divorce hearings, attorney’s fees, and mediation. If you do need to proceed to mediation, you can save time and money by only discussing those things that are causing disagreement.

Be Prepared

As you and your partner untangle your finances, deal with child custody, and more, it is essential to get educated regarding these topics. Get to know your finances by obtaining your credit report, evaluating your property, and investigating your spouse’s share of the assets as much as possible. Then, research your rights regarding these important topics. You won’t need to rely on your spouse’s word regarding how the process should occur, and you can assert yourself without being unfair or aggressive.

Pick Your Battles

Don’t let your emotions guide you. While it may seem unfair that your spouse also wants the car you both worked to pay off, for example, spending months arguing over it in court can cost you far more than the car’s value. Be prepared to compromise, especially if it will save you money in the end.

Use a Legal Document Service

Even if you and your spouse agree on all aspects of your divorce agreement, you will still need to carefully create and file a number of legal documents on a strict schedule as dictated by the court – mistakes can cost you extra time in court, additional filing fees, and may even damage your case. This is a key reason many people choose to hire an attorney to manage their divorce.

However, a legal document service can file divorce documents much more affordably than a firm of family law attorneys. The best services are operated by full-fledged attorneys who will consult with you to determine your needs before drafting your documents and offer unlimited revisions to give you the best chance of success in your case. You’ll be able to avoid both attorneys’ fees and the risk of lengthening your time in divorce court due to mistakes or missed deadlines.

Experienced Divorce Attorneys in Arizona

Efficient Divorce in Arizona

Divorce can be a stressful process even if you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse are divorcing amicably. When you add in the costs of settling, dividing finances, and other endeavors that become necessary in divorce, the process can quickly become expensive.

Draft My Legal Docs is operated by expert family law attorneys who can draft and file family law documents you need to keep as much of your divorce out of the courtroom as possible. Best of all, we offer consultations and revisions to ensure your most critical documents are correct and beneficial to your case. Browse our affordable divorce services in Arizona to learn more about how we can help you divorce at a lower cost.

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