If you are looking for a family lawyer in Phoenix, Arizona you have come to the right place. Our attorneys focuses his practice primarily on family law and he has extensive knowledge of the family courts in Maricopa County. Whether you are filing for divorce or you are a grandparent trying to get visitation with your grandchildren, Judd can help.
Nobody plans to need legal advice when they get married or start a family. Having children or marrying the love of your life is a momentous occasion and it is difficult to contemplate that, unfortunately, problems may arise. As such, it can be a very stressful and traumatic experience if a relationship begins to deteriorate. You can feel confident that there are advocates out there who are willing to guide you through these difficulties and find the best resolution possible. The Law Offices of Judd S. Nemiro’s can help you with any of the following family law issues:
- Orders of Protection or restraining orders
- Child Custody
- Child Support
- Spousal maintenance or support
- Modification of family law orders
- Enforcement of family law orders
- Father’s rights
- Grandparent’s rights
- Prenuptial or postnuptial agreements
- Division and valuation of property
- Domestic violence
Our firm understands that the last thing you need to deal with is a high pressure sales environment or a lawyer who just wants to sign you up as a client. You are more than a dollar sign. Our office always takes the time during our consultations to get a feel for your situation and provide you with all of your options. We firmly believe that you deserve nothing less.
Preparing to get married
No couple wants to consider divorce or separation when they are engaged and hoping to spend the rest of their lives together. However, it may be in your best interest to protect your separate property assets just in case. A properly drafted prenuptial agreement is one of the best ways you can protect yourself in the unfortunate event of a divorce or separation.
You and your future spouse should realize that the motive for a prenuptial agreement is not necessarily selfish. Perhaps you want to protect children you have from a previous marriage or you are trying to protect your new spouse from debts that you have incurred. Regardless of your motive, a prenuptial agreement must be very carefully drafted to avoid having it overturned by a judge. Here are some things to think about:
- It must be in writing and signed by both parties
- It cannot be against public policy
- It cannot make a child custody or child support plan
- Both spouses should have their own attorney
There are subtle variations and legal principles that apply to each of these general principles and it is in your best interest for both spouses to be represented by independent counsel when drafting a premarital agreement. We knows how to protect your individual assets and satisfy the court’s strict legal requirements.
Divorce, Legal Separation or Annulments
Filing for dissolution of marriage is one of the most difficult decisions a couple can make. Sometimes it is mutual and in some cases it is not. In any scenario, you will want to protect your rights and assets. An experienced family attorney can help you consider all of your options and choose the best course of action. Some things an attorney can help you evaluate are:
- Whether the divorce will be contested or uncontested
- How the other spouse will respond if they are not expecting a divorce
- If a legal separation or annulment is more appropriate than divorce
- The tax consequences of filing for a dissolution of marriage
- How your property will be divided by the judge. This can be based on when or how the property was acquired.
In addition to the factual portion of your divorce case, there are several critical steps to successfully filing for divorce. An attorney can provide invaluable guidance during the legal proceedings and make sure no mistakes are made.
- Drafting and filing court papers
- Ensuring the other spouse is properly served
- Evaluating the other spouse’s response
- Deciding whether it is better to litigate or negotiate
- Managing the discovery process if an agreement cannot be reached
- Handling your child’s well being while the divorce proceeds
- Attending mediation or alternative dispute resolution
- Preparing for and going to trial if it becomes necessary
Divorce can be a very expensive and time consuming process. It is in your best interest to start off the right way and do things in the most efficient and cost effective way.
Getting custody of your children and parenting time
Children can be the invisible victims of divorce. They may not be old enough to understand what is happening and the experience can be very traumatic for them. It is understandable that you will want to shield them from any unnecessary fear or stress. An attorney can help you work with the other parent to reach an amicable agreement that is in the best interest of the child.
- Do you want physical custody of the children?
- How much legal decision making capacity do you want?
- Does your career or other obligations allow you to provide a safe, stable home for the child?
- Which parent can best afford to care for the children?
The courts prefer that the parents work together to draft a mutually agreeable custody and parenting plan. In doing so, both parents will need to consider the long term effects on their children as well as the practicality of the agreement. It does little good to draft a plan that cannot be followed or enforced and a family attorney can help you weigh the various options for effective custody planning.
- An agreement for when and where exchanges of the children will occur
- A method for resolving disagreements about the visitation schedule
- Whether either parent can travel out of state with the child
- A method for amending the parenting plan
- Which parent will be responsible for schooling, transportation and health care decisions
Even if you were never married to the other parent, you will face significant decisions regarding child rearing. In many cases, unmarried parents can face more uncertainty if things such as paternity are in question. There are a large number of decisions that must be made on a daily basis to successfully raise healthy, well adjusted children. The parenting plan will be the basis for how they are raised and you want it to be as thorough as possible. A qualified family lawyer will know how to draft and enforce the best parenting plan.
Providing for your children during and after divorce
While you are working with the other parent and the court to decide who will have custody of the children and when, you will simultaneously have to decide who will be providing financial support to the children. Generally, this will be the non-custodial parent. That is, the parent who does not have primary physical custody. You will have to deal with all of the following:
- What the amount of support will be based on income. The State of Arizona has various calculators to help you figure out what is the appropriate baseline for child support.
- Any adjustments that need to be made for older children. Generally, older kids require more resources and you may have to pay more to support them.
- Adjustments for extraordinary needs such as specialized healthcare or educational support.
- How adjustments to support levels will be handled if the child’s needs change.
- Whether or not you may qualify for a smaller child support burden if you are low income.
- A method for enforcing child support obligations.
How will our property be divided during divorce?
Division of marital property depends heavily on when and how the property was acquired. For purposes of division during divorce, almost any physical property can be relevant. Likewise, debt and other expenses may be divided between the spouses even if it was only accrued by one of them.
If the property was purchased or earned during the marriage it will generally be regarded as “community property” and will be subject to equal division between you and your spouse. Once a spouse files for legal separation, community property ceases to accumulate. If the property was acquired prior to getting married, by inheritance or it was earned as income on a piece of separate property it will be considered “separate property” that you will keep for yourself.
Whether the property is a home, automobile, boat, investment, business, debt, retirement or pension benefit, your attorney will need to be fully aware of both spouse’s assets in order to ensure that property is divided fairly and legally.
Do I have to pay my ex-spouse alimony?
Spousal maintenance, also known as alimony, can be one of the most frustrating aspects of a divorce. You are ending the marriage because you no longer wish to share your life with the other person, and yet, you may be required to pay them money every month. If you are the spouse who is seeking alimony, you may want to know how much you will qualify for and how long the payments will last. There are many factors that will have to be considered:
- Income level and ability to support oneself
- Age and ability to gain employment
- Any specialized expenses such as healthcare
- Modifications to spousal maintenance if circumstances change
If you are paying alimony or receiving it, an attorney who has experience managing spousal maintenance plans can be a helpful resource.
How do I enforce or modify a court order?
Whether you are paying child support, filing for alimony or seeking parenting time with your child, enforcing the court’s order over many years can be challenging. Rights are of little value if you cannot enforce them or modify them when circumstances change. The Law Offices of Judd S. Nemiro have worked on many cases where court orders were not being followed and he has tools to make the other party comply with their legal obligations. Enforcement or modification issues can take many forms.
- Orders of Protection
- Injunctions Against Harassment
- Child Custody
- Spousal Support
- Parenting time
- Grandparent’s visitation rights
- Prenuptial or postnuptial agreements
Arizona courts will typically allow modifications to be made when “substantial and continuing” changes have occurred in a family relationship. Some examples include:
- If a parent is moving or has lost their job, child support may be modified.
- If a spousal maintenance recipient has income growth, their monthly payments may decrease. If the recipient remarries, they will lose all rights to spousal maintenance.
- If a parent is having addiction issues, mental health problems or they are neglecting their children they may lose custody rights or be forced to have only supervised visitation.
Modifications can be based on an array of circumstances and there is no one-size-fits-all approach. Only an attorney who is well versed in family law can guide you through the pitfalls of order enforcement and modification.
What rights do grandparents have in Arizona?
As a society we have decided that it is in children’s best interest to have family elders involved in their lives. Grandparents can provide a wealth of knowledge and experience when it comes to raising children and in most cases they have a very positive impact on a child’s growth and development. Grandparents are supposed to spoil the grandkids!
Sometimes, family circumstances change and the grandparents need to take a more active role. Whether you are seeking visitation rights or custody of your grandchildren, the court will have to decide if your plans are in the best interest of the children. Before you try to gain access to your grandchildren or seek custody of them, it is wise to speak with an attorney who is familiar with advocating on behalf of grandparents. Our attorney’s will work closely with you to understand your rights and choose the best strategy for your case.
At The Law Offices of Judd S. Nemiro we firmly believe that family is the most important institution in society. Families may not always get along and you may face challenges, but you have options and the courts and state agencies are there to help you. If you are considering a divorce or are dealing with fallout of a legal separation we can help you navigate the confusing and frustrating obstacles you face. Call us today and let him be your advocate!