Divorce in Arizona is not uncommon. Arizona is a liberal state and only offers no-fault grounds for divorce meaning you do not need to prove wrongful conduct in order to get divorced. To file for a divorce in Arizona, you or your spouse must have held your primary residency in Arizona for at least 90 days. After the divorce has been filed there is a 60 day waiting period in Arizona before the Decree of Dissolution can be issued.
Arizona has divorce rate of 4.2 per 1,000 of population, according to estimated statistics, which makes it 15th highest in the nation.
Arizona State laws don’t encourage annulment over divorce as it is harder to get because of its few annulment grounds, which are hard to prove. Divorce is a relatively easier option, when it comes to bailing out. Thus much preferred.
Grounds for Divorce in Arizona
There is only one ground for divorce in Arizona and that is to show that the marriage is “irretrievably broken”. You do not need to prove any fault in order to get divorced in AZ, however there are a number of laws and requirements which we detail below. Arizona divorce papers are free to download and easy to completed if you have a simple, uncontested divorce. There are papers available from the Supreme Court of Arizona website for those who HAVE children and for those who DO NOT HAVE children. If you have any concerns or considerations at all regarding your divorce or completing divorce papers it is recommended that you seek advice from an attorney.
Arizona Divorce Laws
Arizona has following divorce laws:
Arizona divorce laws represent both the innovative and the traditional side of the legal system. Either of the spouse applying for divorce should have domicile of Arizona State.
Documents Required to File Divorce
Arizona divorce laws require you to have following documents when you file for divorce:
- Notice of Right to Convert Health Insurance
- Joint Preliminary Injunction and Creditor Notice
Distribution of Property
Under Arizona Divorce law the property purchased during the marital life, should be equally divided on equal half basis. And the property possessed before marriage is to be kept by spouse who owned it.
Change of Name or Restoration of name
Arizona divorce laws allow the wife to take up her pre-marriage name after the divorce.
Mediation counseling is mandatory by Arizona divorce laws before announcing divorce. Mediation counseling is the final reconciliatory effort which the court asks both the spouses to make before final hearing is announced.
Considering Arizona divorce laws, the purpose of alimony is
- To financially “reward” an innocent spouse
- To “punish” a guilty one.
Normally a wife found guilty of adultery might not be awarded alimony, while a husband found guilty of adultery might be ordered to pay excessive punitive alimony to his ex-wife. Arizona divorce laws regard the same for desertion.
According to Arizona divorce laws, child custody are not posed from a standpoint of equal claim of mothers and fathers and are more often posed as if the child were already in the mother’s embrace. Consequently, the framing of child custody decisions is such that the question at divorce becomes one of whether the child will remain under the mother’s care and control or be taken from her wholly or in part.
Arizona divorce laws usually allow the mother to retain custody. But at the same time recognize her need for support for herself and the children. Consequently the wife may suggest cooperating with a consent decree if her husband is willing to help her financially under certain conditions. This means that she will not contest that there were statutory grounds for the divorce, but rather consent that they were, in fact, present.
Contact a professional divorce attorney or divorce lawyer for comprehensive divorce laws information in your state.
Arizona Annulment Laws
Annulment is another legal way of ending a marriage. In annulment, the court declares that the marriage never took place. The major difference between divorce and annulment is that divorce is the termination of marriage whereas annulment is a legal decree declaring a marriage void. The grounds for annulment differ from state to state depending on the annulment rate, rules and regulations of the state. According to Arizona annulment laws grounds for annulment are:
Fraud or misrepresentation is one of the major Arizona annulment grounds. If a fraudster commits any fake contract or misrepresents his/her partner, the injured party can claim an annulment in Arizona under the Arizona annulment laws.
Concealment of Disease
If a person is infected with any harmful disease (STD) and conceals this from his/her partner, the victim has the right to file for Arizona annulment.
Concealment of Crime
Involvement in any crime or in case of imprisonment and not disclosing it is a fraud and is a valid ground for Arizona annulment under Arizona annulment laws.
Inability to Consummate the Marriage
Arizona annulment can also be obtained if a person is unable to sexually satisfy his/her partner or refuses to have sexual relations.
Addiction to Drugs
Drug addiction is ground for annulment according to Arizona annulment laws. If your spouse is a habitual alcoholic or drug addict, you can file for Arizona annulment.
Arizona Divorce Laws Frequently Asked Questions
- How long must I be residing in Arizona to file for divorce?
According to the Arizona divorce law you are required to be a resident for at least 90 days before filing for divorce.
- What happens if my spouse doesn’t reside in the State of Arizona?
Arizona divorce law doesn’t require the defendant to be a resident of the State of Arizona. This however complicates the divorce process.
- What are the complications that occur when the defendant spouse doesn’t reside in Arizona?
Under Arizona divorce law, the defendant spouse has to be served a notice. If the defendant spouse doesn’t reside in Arizona, then the State of Arizona will utilize the services of a special process server, who will then deliver the notice.
- How long does it take for the dissolution of marriage?
The Arizona divorce law requires that the defendant/respondent file his/her response within 20 days. In case that the respondent doesn’t reside in Arizona the State of Arizona gives a 30 day period to receive the response from the respondent. Arizona divorce law allows divorce on no fault grounds and doesn’t have a separation requirement for this. This allows a quick resolution of divorce cases in the State of Arizona.
- How much does it cost to file for divorce in the State of Arizona?
The filing fee depends on the county of Arizona that you are residing in. Currently the cost varies considerably but filing fees are generally in the $200-400 region.
- How do Arizona divorce lawyers charge their clients?
Arizona divorce lawyers either charge according to a set fee or on an hourly rate. It is important to clarify the fee arrangement.
- How much can I be charged for hiring the services of an Arizona divorce lawyer?
This really depends on the complexity of your case, the financial health you are in, the fee normally charged by the Arizona divorce lawyer and the negotiating tactics you employ. You could be charged anywhere between a few hundred dollars to a few thousand dollars depending on the complexity of your divorce case. However since, Arizona doesn’t allow grounds for divorce the Arizona Divorce lawyers fee is normally a lot lower in comparison to other states.
- Do I require any Arizona divorce lawyer?
No, you don’t require any Arizona divorce lawyer but it is highly recommended to have one.
- Can my spouse and I hire the same divorce attorney?
No, it is not possible for the same Arizona divorce lawyer to represent both spouses in the court of law in Arizona.
- Is Arizona common law State?
No, Arizona divorce law isn’t a common law marriage State.
- Is Arizona a No-Fault State?
Yes, Arizona is a no fault State. In fact in the State of Arizona you can only file for no fault divorce.
- How long does a couple have to be separated before filing for divorce in Arizona?
There are no separation requirements under Arizona divorce law. In many ways Arizona, allows an easy divorce.