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Posts Tagged ‘Consent Decree’

Divorce Mediation and Its Advantages

Posted on: May 30th, 2013 by Scott Law

Divorce mediation is a way of finding solutions to issues like spousal support and child support payments. The mediation occurs out of the courtroom where both parties and their divorce attorneys in Arizona meet the court-appointed third-party who acts as the mediator. The mediator is a neutral person who assists the parties involved in reaching a settlement. The divorcing couple gets an opportunity to sort out issues and come to an agreement on various issues. The mediator can only offer an opinion during the process and cannot force an agreement on the parties.

Advantages of  Divorce Mediation

A successful divorce mediation saves both time and money. Through mediation, a couple can sidestep the long divorce court process saving their time as well as the family court’s time and resources. The fees paid to the lawyer would also be relatively less. Since the mediator is a third-party who has absolutely nothing to gain from the outcome of mediation, it is fair to all. Also, the objectivity with which the mediator views the issues enables him/her to come up with solutions that the divorcing couple often cannot.

The entire mediation process is confidential. There would be no court reporter recording everything that is said during the process. Essentially there would be no “airing dirty laundry” in public as this is a settlement of divorce out of court. If the entire process goes smoothly, you would hopefully be able to maintain a cordial relationship with your former spouse after divorce. Mediation also helps reduce the tension often involved in court proceedings.

Scott Law Offices is committed to working with clients to negotiate the best possible resolution in every case and is prepared to litigate to protect the rights of our clients.  Contact our office for a free consultation.

Negotiating Divorce Settlement Agreements – Factors to Consider

Posted on: May 2nd, 2013 by Scott Law

Maintaining financial security is the top consideration for any person who is faced with a divorce. So, the aim must be negotiating a divorce settlement that will keep you financially viable throughout your life. Before you separate, you, your spouse, and your attorneys must get together and decide how to divide the marital assets.

Retirement plans

If retirement has been accumulated during the marriage by either spouse, the amount accumulated would need to be divided equitably.  This can often be done by agreement of the parties and in working with the plan administrator.  Sometimes, however, a specialist is required to accomplish the division of retirement and to draft the appropriate orders.   If retirement is going to be a major source of income for you, it must be taken into consideration during the divorce settlement.

Health insurance

If you have children and also have health insurance, the court would ask you to extend the coverage to them. If neither parent currently has access to health insurance, the parents need to determine what the cost of insurance would be in order to factor it into the child support payments.

Marital home

The court takes into account the kind of life the child is accustomed to and ensures that the lifestyle is maintained. So, the parent who gets the parenting time with the child most often may also be awarded the marital home as it plays a huge part in maintaining the pre-divorce lifestyle of the child.  In negotiating a divorce settlement, marital home must be addressed as well as any equity, negative equity and debts.

Child Care and Extracurriculars

The parents should consider how to divide child care costs and extracurricular activities for the child. These expenses may be factored into the child support payments.   They may also be agreed upon as expenses divided outside of child support.  The parents will determine what works best for them and utilize the resources of a Phoenix family law attorney to assist

A Judge’s Authority and Having the Advantage of An Experienced Family Law Attorney

Posted on: March 15th, 2013 by Scott Law

Limits of a Judge’s Authority

Divorce, in general, is referred to as dissolution of marriage in many states. The Superior Court judge is the only authority that can grant permission to dissolve a couple’s marital status. In addition to this, the judge is also authorized to do the following:

  1. Issue orders that pertain to the custody / legal decision-making, control and care of the couple’s children.
  2. Divide assets and debts.
  3. Issue orders relating to monetary support of the couple’s children.
  4. Issue orders to one of the parties to pay the legal fees incurred in the case by the other party.
  5. Issue orders for spousal support.

The Advantage of Having an Experience Family Law Attorney

Under Arizona divorce and child custody laws, the couple is encouraged and permitted to reach an agreement relating to all issues of divorce such as legal decision-making for the children, physical custody of children, alimony, division of debts and assets, etc. When using a divorce attorney Phoenix family law cases can often result in a partial or full settlement.  It is advisable to have a settlement agreement drafted after negotiation by an experienced attorney. The parting spouses are most often unable to customize all terms of settlement to suit their circumstances and needs, but an experienced divorce attorney can help to ensure that their agreement is as inclusive as possible.

There are also certain issues that court is not authorized to otherwise order but can be included as a provision that is enforceable in the divorce settlement agreement. In other words, you stand to gain rights through a well-drafted divorce settlement agreement, which a court may not otherwise provide you.

If you are in need of an experienced divorce attorney contact Scott Law Offices and make an appointment for your free consultation today.

Parenting Time and the Holiday Season

Posted on: December 6th, 2012 by Scott Law

Scott Law Offices is focused on family.  The holiday season is all about family.  Holidays can bring a certain amount of stress for many people.  When two people share child custody in Arizona, that holiday stress is often magnified.  Avoiding child custody and parenting time issues during the holidays can reduce stress for all involved.  By doing so, the children can enjoy a great holiday experience with both parents.  Here are some things to consider:

Check Your Paperwork

Your court orders for child custody and parenting time are binding.  Oftentimes there are specific orders regarding holiday parenting time set forth in your parenting time orders.  Stick to this schedule unless and until the orders are formally changed.  Most parenting time arrangements can be modified so long as the parties have a mutual agreement in writing.  Before making any modification to the parenting time schedule, be sure to follow the procedures for modifications set forth in your court orders.

Travel

Be sure to check your custody orders for limitations on travel.  It is often the case that advanced notice must be given to the other parent prior to traveling out of State with the children.  Sometimes permission must be obtained from the other parent to allow the children to travel out of State.  Plan ahead and give sufficient time for any necessary discussions related to travel.  Also, you may want to consider allowing some form of video chatting between the children and the other parent while you are travelling.  This may ease any stress that the children and the other parent may feel from being away from each other during the holidays.

Trade Time

If you find that you need to keep the children for extra time over the holidays or hope to have the children on a day that is not designated to you in your custody orders, consider trading time.  You could offer the other parent extra days at any time during the year or possibly offer them a holiday that would normally fall during your parenting time.  Flexibility is important in any co-parenting situation.

Be Nice

Though it may be difficult, try to be nice.  A little bit of compassion and tolerance can go a long way.  This can alleviate stress not only for you and the other parent, but for your children.  Communication is often the key to avoiding difficult holiday disputes.  Having effective communication and playing nicely with the other parent will set a good example for your children and may help them to have a happy holiday.

If you have questions about your parenting time schedule or child custody orders do not wait until last-minute.  Avoid the stress of last-minute holiday disputes by addressing potential holiday parenting time issues well in advance of the holidays and court closures.  Contact a Scott Law Offices custody attorney for your free consultation.

Why Do I Need A Divorce Attorney?

Posted on: October 12th, 2012 by Scott Law

One of the most common questions posed to divorce attorneys is:  Why do I need an attorney?  Husband and Wife may agree to  the divorce and may even agree to the terms of the divorce.   Regardless of the agreements reached by the parties, a final Decree of Dissolution of Marriage is required in every case.  This Decree, commonly known as a Divorce Decree, is a legally binding document and is an enforceable order of the court.  Both parties will be required to follow the orders set forth in the Divorce Decree and can be sanctioned for failing to adhere to it’s requirements.  A Phoenix family law attorney is able to draft a Divorce Decree that is tailored to the specific case and the parties individual needs.

A divorce attorney understands what is required to be included in the Decree and what special terms can be added to fit the parties circumstances.  The attorney, in drafting the Divorce Decree, is able to account for certain situations that the parties may have never considered and use specificity in an effort to avoid disagreements as to the interpretation of the Decree’s terms.  This can help to preserve an amicable relationship between the parties and avoid future litigation and expense.

For more information on Phoenix Consent Decree or uncontested divorce, contact Scott Law Offices.