During Your Case
Legal Documents Needed During Your Family Law Case In AZ
The Arizona Rules of Family Law Procedure include several approved forms that are required by the Court or may be helpful in your case.
During your case you may receive a court order that requires you to fill out certain forms. Although you can print, fill out, and file some paperwork yourself, there are numerous legal and procedural requirements that may be missed. Of course we recommend you hire a lawyer to help ensure everything is done properly. However, we understand not everyone can afford to hire a lawyer. That’s why we created Draft My Legal Docs. To offer you the help, support, and expertise of an attorney at a fraction of the cost of hiring an attorney for full scope representation.
Below are the documents that you might need during your case.
If the other party in your case has failed to show up in court after either 20 days if they live in-state or 30 days if they live out-of-state, your first step is to begin the process of filing an Application for Default. This legal document officially recognizes that the other party has failed to appear in court or respond to their served legal documents.
After the completion of an Application for Default, the other party will then be served again and will have ten court business days to respond. If they still don’t answer, you can then file a Default Decree and request that the trial be completed as a default hearing.
If you want to cancel or move/continue upcoming proceedings, you must have a valid reason to do so. You must be able to prove that you aren’t requesting to cancel or move a hearing solely to postpone the hearing. If you have a legitimate reason for canceling or continuing, such as scheduling conflicts, incorrect information regarding the case, or case documents being sent to the wrong person, you should file a Motion to Vacate and/or Continue. This Motion should be timely filed to allow enough time for the judge to render a decision as well as notify the parties involved.
There are a range of potentially valid reasons for asking for an end/vacate or continue an upcoming hearing or trial, and it’s best to consult legal experts to explore your options. If you need legal documentation services in Arizona, our team of highly-trained and experienced legal professionals are here to help.
In order to seal a record, you must file a Motion to Seal with the court. Through this motion, you have the ability to seal or redact certain information from the public. If successful, this information is then ineligible for viewing or discussion. However, there must be a pressing reason for wanting to hide said information from the public. Your reason for doing so must be something other than simply not wanting the general public to have access to the records. A few reasons that you may want to seal documents are:
- Avoidance of liability gained by public release
- Protection of personal safety
- Disputes of confidentiality, especially if opposing parties quantify the same document differently
Divorce proceedings can go a number of different ways, and some spouses either will not or do not need to contest the terms of a divorce. In scenarios where both parties have agreed upon all aspects and outcomes of a divorce, a Consent Decree can be filed. Once approved, this decree can be particularly useful for saving time and money for the involved parties, since it can significantly reduce the amount of time spent in hearings and avoid any further ones. Supporting documentation will be needed along with this decree to provide evidence for matters such as finances and property.
If you are going through a divorce and are a parent of a child under the age of 18, you will need to make various decisions regarding their status and have them approved by the court. You will need to file a legal document called a Parenting Plan, which essentially outlines how you and your partner will split up parenting responsibilities.
This document can determine parenting time, legal decision-making responsibilities, as well as visitation rights for each parent. The plan will also outline when and where exchanges of children should be made, in addition to how the parents plan to communicate about the children and what platforms they will use to do so.
Since child support is typically involved in cases involving minor children, be prepared to submit an Affidavit of Financial Information with the court along with a Child Support Worksheet.
If you are eager to take matters outside of the court, you may file a Petition for Open Negotiation. This petition allows parties to meet with a neutral third-party negotiator who will attempt to help each party reach an acceptable resolution.
This option can be quite effective for divorcing couples looking to cut costs dedicated to ongoing legal proceedings and divert their time and energy to making solid decisions for their future. If this fails and a solution cannot be found, the negotiator will inform the court and proceedings will resume. In Arizona, legal document services are excellent options to help you better understand and prepare yourself for these negotiations. They can cost much less than an ongoing attorney and are just as effective in scenarios similar to this one.
In Arizona, if you have multiple hearings involving similar people and legal concerns, you have the option to merge all of these cases into one. This typically happens when two separate parties file their cases around the same time. For instance, a Wife files for divorce and prior to being served with the divorce paperwork, the Husband goes and files for divorce. This can be done by filing a Motion to Consolidate. After examining the ongoing proceedings and deeming that the parties are the same and have similar pressing legal issues, they can be combined into a single joint hearing.
This is done to save the court time, as well as to save time and money for the involved parties. The court is strict in its requirement that the involved parties are the same, and the cases must have nearly identical topics for this to happen in Arizona. Legal document services can be an enormous help in creating convincing documentation to better your chances of getting a combined trial.
Respondent parties can avoid having documents served, either intentionally or unintentionally. You simply may not know where the other party lives, or they might have successfully dodged your attempts so far. Regardless of the specifics, avoidance still means that the case is being delayed. If you are still waiting for the opposing party to be served in your case, you may have the opportunity to file a Motion for Alternative Service. If granted, this petition allows the respondent to be legally served through other means. Some of these alternative methods can include:
- Via social media account
- By first or second class mail
- Via a publication in a newspaper
- Via an email to their last known email address
- Posting a physical copy to the door of the last known address
There are other methods beyond these to alternatively serve another party. If this is happening during your Arizona court case, take the time to speak with legal experts to explore and consider all your options.
Whether you are just beginning your case or your case has already ended and you need to make modifications, we are here to help. Our services ensure you have the correct documents and that you are not only submitting them correctly, but in a way that best protects you and your family.