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    Arizona Child Custody FAQ




    So there is no confusion as to terminology… Arizona courts now use the legal jargon “legal decision-making” instead of custody.  As defined in Arizona Law, the Arizona courts will determine who will have legal decision-making authority over the children.

    In addition, child custody disputes in Arizona may arise from a divorce, or unmarried parents can be involved in this legal matter.  Therefore, working with a skilled, knowledgable, and experienced Arizona Child Custody Attorney is your best option to protect your rights and the rights of your family and children.  Arizona statue, The Best Interests Of the Child, by design is to prevent unnecessary hardships to a child when their parents no longer choose to live together.  My AZ Lawyers provide expert family law representation while also keeping the best interests of the children and family in mind.

    What is Parenting Time?

    The amount of visitation time each parent will have with the children is parenting time.  Therefore, Arizona does focus on ensuring that a child will receive meaningful, equal, and frequent contact with each parent. 

    How is parenting time determined?

    The Arizona court looks at 3 main areas when determining parenting time orders:

    • work schedule and availability
    • geographical location
    • support of the parent by others (the support structure of each parent by other individuals)

    In addition, our attorneys can help to construct a well-thought out plan for care in advance to show the court where the best place is for the child to get appropriate supervision.

    What If my spouse and I cannot agree on the legal decision-making (custody) ?  We’re having a “custody battle”…

    If you cannot agree on the legal decision-making, you will go trial where evidence will be presented for the court to consider.

    Who will get to make the legal decisions regarding my child?

    Legal decision making is defined as the parent that will make all major decisions concerning the child:  medical, educational, and religious.  Also, the Arizona court does make an effort to see that both parents receive equal Legal Decision Making Rights.  The following are possible rulings a court could make regarding the legal decision making:

    • Joint legal decision making (both parents work together to make decisions regarding the rearing of their children)
    • Sole Legal decision making (one parent makes the decisions regarding their children’s rearing)

    How is it determined who will receive legal decision-making authority (custody) for my children? 

    Some key factors include:

    • The child’s adjustment to home, school, and community
    • past, present, and future relationship between parent and child
    • interaction and interrelationships of the child and any other person who significantly affects the child’s best interest 
    • the child’s preference (if of a suitable age, maturity)
    • the parent’s preference
    • the child’s age
    • the child’s progress in school
    • the health (mental and physical) of the child
    • parents’ criminal records
    • health of the parents (mental and physical)
    • Domestic Violence History
    • history of drug or alcohol abuse

    Can I refuse to allow parenting time to my ex-husband if he has not paid child support?

    No.  These are two separate issues.  A parent cannot make decisions regarding changing of or refusal of parenting time.  Only a court can order these decisions.

    Lastly, email My AZ Lawyers today to schedule an appointment at one of our Phoenix area or Tucson law offices.  We also offer free, no hassle, no obligations consultations.  As well as, affordable payment plans.