Family Law Attorney in Arizona
Arizona Family Law Attorney
Family law cases can be complicated and emotionally-charged matters. At Brown & Hobkirk, PLLC our Arizona family law attorneys understand that your legal issues can have a significant and long-term effect on your life, as well as the lives of the people closest to you.
When you are dealing with a divorce, paternity case or another complex family matter, turn to our skilled and compassionate family lawyers. We will work closely with you to develop a personalized strategy that meets your goals.
For more than two decades, we have cared for and helped individuals and families in Scottsdale, Phoenix, Chandler, Tucson, and across the entire state. Call us today to speak with a compassionate and knowledgeable Arizona family attorney.
How Can We Help You?
If you are going through a divorce, paternity case, child support dispute, protection orders or any other family law matter, it is important that you have a legal team to protect your rights and interests.
The skilled and experienced Arizona family lawyers at Brown & Hobkirk, PLLC can provide the information you need. We can help you make the best decisions for your future. For more than 20 years, we have provided Arizona families with compassionate and dedicated legal representation. We handle these family law matters:
Divorce is one of the most difficult things a family can go through. Our Arizona divorce attorneys know that every family’s situation is different. That is why we take a personalized approach to every case.
We will take the time to fully understand your goals. We know that divorce can be a stressful and emotionally draining process. At Brown & Hobkirk, PLLC here is how we can help:
- We can explain your rights with respect to custody and paternity time with your children.
- We can advise you on financial support and the division of marital property.
- We can help reduce your emotional stress and keep you informed throughout the process.
- We will help you stand up for what matters most to you
When a divorce involves a child or children, parents know that the care of the children is in the family’s best interests. Planning for child custody (referred to in Arizona as, “legal decision-making authority”) and parenting time can be among the most contentious aspects of a divorce. It is vital to have a knowledgeable attorney on your side.
It is important to understand the difference between physical and legal custody in Arizona.
- Physical custody is referred to in Arizona as “parenting time” and refers to the place where the children live most of the time. When equal parenting time is awarded, the division of parenting time is generally split between the parents, which is often the case in Arizona.
- Legal custody is referred to in Arizona as “legal decision-making authority” and refers to the ability of a parent to make decisions on behalf of their children. Those legal custody decisions may touch on topics such as medical care, education and religious upbringing.
Child support refers to the financial amount that must be paid by one parent for the support of a child. The amount is determined by the Arizona Child Support Guidelines and a “child support worksheet.” Several variables must be evaluated before an award of child support can be calculated.
Brown & Hobkirk, PLLC can help you work through child support issues. Here’s how we can help:
- Calculate child support. Our team can help provide an estimate of the amount that you would need to receive or pay.
- Enforce payment. If your spouse is not paying child support, our lawyers can help you file a motion to get payment through wage garnishment.
- Modify the terms. If you undergo a significant life change, such as a job termination, we can help modify the terms of your child support order.
Generally, parenting time, child support, and spousal maintenance can be modified once you establish a substantial and continuing change in circumstances.
Modifications must be in the child’s best interests. If the two parties agree to the modifications, the process can be straightforward, inexpensive and relatively simple. However, if the parties do not agree on the modifications, court proceedings will be necessary.
Family situations that may warrant a modification include:
- A change in income due to job loss
- A parent with a new job or new schedule
- Costly medical bills
- An ongoing medical condition
- Serious injury
- The remarriage of a spouse
- A move out of state by one parent
- Domestic abuse or other illegal conduct
- Noncompliance with parenting plans
- A major change in the child’s medical needs
If you want to pursue a modification, an experienced attorney can effectively represent your interests in court. That will give you the best opportunity for a modification that suits your current needs.
Under an Arizona premarital agreement – also commonly referred to as a “prenuptial” agreement – parties can change how their future potential divorce would be carried out under Arizona state law. For instance, while income earned during the marriage is usually deemed to be community property, spouses can enter into a premarital agreement that treats income earned during the marriage as separate property.
Premarital agreements can also modify how real estate ownership will be handled and whether spousal maintenance (also referred to as “alimony”) will be required after a divorce. If you desire to draft a fair and enforceable premarital agreement, our experienced attorneys are ready to help.
The theory behind annulment is that the marriage was not valid from the beginning. In other words, a legal marriage never existed. When a person receives an annulment, his or her status returns to single. People who need to dissolve a marriage may view an annulment as the correct solution in these situations:
- The marriage was between people who were not legally eligible to marry, such as a parent and child, a grandparent and grandchild, or a brother and sister.
- The marriage was illegal because one spouse was still married to someone else.
- The marriage was illegal because one party was too young to marry without parental consent.
- The marriage was based on fraud.
- The marriage occurred when one or both parties lacked the mental capacity to enter into it. For example, one spouse might suffer from mental illness or argue an impairment existed because the spouse was under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Orders of Protection
If a family member is violent or abusive, a restraining order, or “order of protection,” may be sought. This order directs one family member to avoid contact with another family member. An Arizona family law attorney can help you in seeking an order of protection. You may seek one if you have been abused or you have reason to believe your children are being abused.
If you feel you have been wrongly placed under a restraining order, it is important that you promptly seek legal representation. Otherwise, your right to challenge the restraining order can expire. If you believe the order is unjust and not based on the truth, consult an attorney.
Whenever a child is born to unwed parents, the court can enter an order establishing paternity. This establishes the identity of the child’s father. The court can then enter orders on legal decision making, parenting time and child support.
- In Arizona, paternity proceedings may be brought by the State or the parent of a child born out of wedlock.
After the paternity petition is filed, the parent must admit or deny paternity within a certain time frame. If paternity is denied, the court will order the alleged father to submit to a DNA test to determine paternity. We can help you understand Arizona’s laws regarding paternity and the associated rights and obligations.
To gain visitation rights in Arizona, a grandparent must establish one of the following:
- The parents have been divorced for three months, and the grandparent is the parent of the non-custodial parent.
- One of the child’s parents is deceased or missing.
- The parents of the child were never married.
When you hire Brown & Hobkirk, PLLC we will develop a strategy to persuade the court that visitation with your grandchild is in the child’s best interests. Our attorneys can present evidence that will show:
- A positive relationship exists between you and your grandchild.
- You have legitimate motives for having contact with your grandchild.
- The parent who is attempting to prevent your visitation has an ulterior motive.
- Time spent with your grandchild will be beneficial to the child.
Name Change Petitions
Court forms for applying for a name change are available on each County’s Superior Court Website. You must complete the form, and have it notarized by a notary public. You will have to attend a legal hearing at which your name change will be approved.
When contemplating a name change, it is recommended you get assistance from an attorney who knows the law. Our knowledgeable lawyers can explain the consequences of changing your name. We will ensure you have the proper documents, and we will help you complete the required forms. We can also attend your hearing if that becomes necessary.
Why You Need an Attorney for Family Law Issues
An attorney can be objective about your family law case at times when you cannot, especially when dealing with highly charged emotional issues.
In any family law court case, the paperwork that must be completed can seem overwhelming. A skilled and knowledgeable Arizona family law attorney can work through that paperwork and help you resolve your family law case.
When a complex divorce involves substantial financial disputes, attorneys often work with a team of financial experts who can speak knowledgeably about those aspects of your case.
An experienced Arizona family law lawyer will also know whether your divorce may be best resolved through an alternative dispute resolution technique (“ADR”), such as mediation. ADR procedures can often save you time and money.
Talk to a Family Law Lawyer in Arizona
The Arizona family law attorneys at Brown & Hobkirk, PLLC have extensive experience handling a wide range of complex family matters. When you work with us, we take the time to understand your goals, and learn what matters most to you. Our approach allows us to create a results-oriented plan in your case that will move you toward to a better, brighter future.