While you may want to get a divorce, it does not mean the process is enjoyable or easy to understand. You are likely feeling a lot of confusion, stress and anxiety. As you prepare to end your marriage, you probably have several questions. 

The more you understand about the divorce process in Arizona, the better you will feel about your next step. Here are answers to some common questions about divorce.

Do I need to give a reason for wanting a divorce?

No. It is a common misconception that there needs to be some sort of legal ground for pursuing a divorce. Many people assume there must be infidelity, financial irresponsibility or some other reasoning for wanting a divorce. But you do not need to provide evidence of anything to the court. All that is necessary is for one or both of you to claim that your marriage is irretrievably broken. 

How does property division work?

You have two options for dividing property in an Arizona divorce: deciding on the details with your spouse or asking the court to divide the property according to state law. Arizona is a community property state, meaning that any assets and debts you acquire during your marriage belong equally to both of you. The division of property must be fair, but not necessarily equal. The three steps to dividing property are categorizing each asset as marital or separate, assigning a value to the asset and deciding how to split it. 

Who gets custody?

Arizona courts make custody decisions according to what is in the best interests of the child. The court considers numerous factors in this decision, including:

  • The preferences of the parents and child
  • The current relationship between the parents and child
  • The ability of the child to adjust to new surroundings at home, school and the community
  • Which parent has a track record of providing care for the child
  • Any history of abuse or neglect

The court may award joint or sole custody.