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Arizona Family Law Blog

Older couples divorce at higher rates

Arizona couples over the age of 50 are divorcing at a higher rate than younger spouses. Part of the reason is that subsequent marriages fail at a higher rate than initial vows, but there appears to be a generational aspect as well. While divorce rates for the general population are now under 40 percent, they have doubled for those over 50. The phenomenon has sparked the term 'gray divorce" which refers to older couples calling it quits.

A significant number of gray divorces involve empty nest parents approaching retirement. A recent study revealed that one-third of all divorced women over 50 had departed a marriage lasting three decades or more. Spouses can find themselves at a financial disadvantage if they have taken a hands-off approach to family finances. The survey questioned 600 divorced or widowed women as well as 1,500 married couples. More than half of women said they leave major financial decisions to their husbands. Not surprisingly, 59 percent of widows and divorced women expressed regret over their lack of involvement in financial matters.

Will an Arizona court honor your prenuptial agreement?

An Arizona resident who negotiated and signed a prenuptial agreement before marriage might wonder in the wake of extreme marital difficulty whether it will achieve its purposes in divorce.

Alternatively, a soon-to-be ex-partner might think that the agreement he or she signed prior to betrothal was unfair and now wonder if there is any chance that a court might deem it legally unenforceable.

When arguments over housework leads to divorce

How household chores are divided could make or break a marriage for some couples in Arizona. According to a study by Harvard Business School that looked at 3,000 couples, of the ones who divorced, 25 percent named disagreements over housework as the main reason they split up.

Several studies support the idea that creating more leisure time by paying someone else to do certain chores ranging from laundry to grocery delivery may lead to a better sense of well-being for people. The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found in a 2017 study that $100 to $200 per month spent on what it called "outsourcing" led to improved relationships. Paying for these services allows couples to avoid the argument over who will do the chores and also gives them more time to spend together.

3 divorce myths debunked

If friends and family are giving you advice about your impending divorce, chances are you are hearing a lot of misleading tips. While these people may be sympathetic and have good intentions, you should take what they say with a grain of salt. There are many myths about divorce going around, and what works for one divorcing couple may not work for everyone. 

Believing in a misconception can leave you worse off financially and emotionally. Here are some of the most prevalent myths regarding divorce you should stop believing immediately. 

Divorce-linked illegalities yield dire results for ex-spouse

Had he known the dire consequences linked with a reduction in child support payments and a couple extra weeks with his son in the summer, an ex-Navy veteran would hit the replay button on his life.

And he would have never forged his former spouse's signature on divorce papers and filed them in court.

What divorcing parents should and should not do

Many estranged Arizona parents can often find it difficult to deal with family and custody conflicts, especially if the divorce itself was not amicable. However, the change in family circumstances can also be particularly difficult for the children, especially since they often do not have a say in their family dynamics. To help make the transition easier, there are certain things that divorced parents should and should not do.

As mMany children feel that they are the cause of the divorce, parents should talk to their children regularly about their thoughts and feelings. They can also talk to their children's teachers and friends. In addition to working as a unified front, if possible, both parents should understand that the children will still love both of them. If the children show signs or symptoms of depression, self-blame or anxiety, parent should consider coming up with healthy distractions or find a qualified therapist to help.

How to determine parenting time

When people in Arizona or anywhere else in America can't agree on how to divide custody of their children, a visitation schedule could be created for them. In some cases, a schedule is needed because the parents live a long distance from each other. However, it may also be necessary if the parties are unable or unwilling to come to an arrangement on their own.

If parents are able to communicate in an effective manner, they are generally allowed to provide input during the creation of a visitation schedule. The child may also be allowed to provide input depending on his or her age. In addition to laying out the days and times in which noncustodial parents are with their kids, a child visitation schedule may specify if visits are supervised or not. It is worth noting that a schedule can be created even if parents have shared custody of their children.

OCSE tweaks collection system

Parents in Arizona who pay or receive child support may be interested to learn that almost $33 billion of child support was collected in the federal fiscal year 2016. According to a representative of the Office of Child Support Enforcement, 75 percent of the support that was collected was obtained through income withholding. The OCSE is taking certain steps and collaborating with payroll businesses and professionals to make sure the income withholding collection process continues to yield good results.

Verification requests sent to employers are used to obtain information about withholding, wages and the availability of the health insurance. Many requests from child-support agencies are routinely processed by third-party processors that have been hired by employers. The agencies object to fees that are being charged by the third-party processors. Although the OCSE is working with all parties involved for a mutually agreeable solution, states are on the verge of issuing notices to remind employers that addressing the verification requests is their responsibility and that states will not pay the fees charged by the third parties.

Domestic violence: complex and replete with misconceptions

Domestic violence is far more than just the straightforward physical abuse that legions of people see it as, and that misinformed view needs to be eradicated before the problem can be addressed in a meaningful way.

So notes violence expert Susan R. Paisner, who states that many myths need to be dispelled about a topic that is "shrouded in misinformation."

Entrepreneur finds marketing niche: co-parenting app

So-called computer and smartphone "apps" that address virtually every subject are seemingly being developed daily. Nothing more than a device in hand is needed to make music and videos, write a book, paint, monitor home security from afar and engage in a thousand other activities.

Like parenting, for example.

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