If you are considering a divorce, or have been served with divorce papers, it is a very difficult and stressful position to be in. Divorce is never easy, however as divorce attorneys, it is our job to help it go as smoothly as possible to reduce stress, expense, and emotional toll on all those involved. To help you prepare, here is what to expect and what to begin changing to help it go more smoothly.
How Long Does a Divorce Take?
In Arizona, a divorce takes a minimum of 3 months. However, for many people, the divorce process will take 6-12 months, even more in complicated cases. Children, a business and other assets, and how quickly agreements can be made regarding them, will determine how long it goes beyond that.
Paperwork & Hiring an Attorney
Filing with the court is the next step in the process. When you file the paper work with the courts, you must also pay the filing fee which varies county by county in Arizona. It is important to complete your paperwork fully and accurately. A copy of the paperwork must be served to your spouse.
A divorce attorney will give you a free consultation to help you determine if they are the right lawyer for your case and to give you information about hiring them including their rates and retainer (the amount of money you need to pay upfront in order to hire them). If you hire an attorney right away, they will be responsible to completing and submitting the paperwork. It also means they can appear on your behalf to court appointments.
Hearing & Parenting Classes
If you have children, you are required to take parenting classes after you have served or been served. You may or may not have to appear for a hearing- that will be determined by the judge in your case. You will need to complete a Parenting Time plan, Child Support paperwork, and Decision-making plan.
Consent Decree, Mediation, or Hearing
If you agree to all the divorce terms, 60 days after service you may submit a consent decree, which the judge has up to 60 days to sign.
If there is not full agreement, you may consider going to mediation to come to a resolution. If a resolution can not be achieved, you will go to trial. The trial will include you, your divorce attorney as well as your spouse and his or her divorce lawyer to come to full resolution to dissolve the marriage.
Simon Law group is here to help with a free consultation to help you have a successful divorce with or without children. Protect your rights! Serving the Greater Phoenix area with family law and divorce concerns, Simon Law Group can be reached anytime day or night at 480-745-2450.