Everything You Need to Know about No Fault Divorce in Arizona
Legislature pertaining to divorce and proving blame/responsibility for the end of the partnership varies from state to state. Arizona is one of the places in the US that have no-fault regulations. This means that spouses don’t have to prove blame or establish responsibility for the end of the marriage. No fault divorce in Arizona is hassle free.
Because of these regulations court isn’t going to take in consideration facts like drug or alcohol abuse, character flaws or gambling when alimony is determined and other aspects of the divorce get a final ruling.
How Procedures Work for No Fault Divorce in Arizona?
Just like in all other states, the process for no fault divorce in Arizona is initiated whenever one of the spouses files a petition for the dissolution of the marriage in court.
The petition has to include a reason for the desire. Because of the state’s regulations, most of the petitions are filed as no-fault. In this case, the petition states that the marriage is irreversibly broken and the party that has initiated the proceedings is free from having to prove which party has contributed to this turn of events.
The other spouse will be served with the petition and will have to respond within a 20-day period from its filing. Just like in many other parts of the US, Arizona has a cooling off period that lasts for 60 days after the filing of the petition.
If both parties are in agreement that they would like to get a divorce, they will be served with settlement terms for the divorce. The two spouses are expected to come to an agreement about these terms for the finalization of the marriage dissolution to occur. If the two parties can’t reach an agreement, the court will be responsible for the final determination.
Whenever a simple no fault divorce in Arizona is filed and both parties are in agreement, the divorce can occur immediately after the end of the 60-day cooling off period. A judge will typically approve the settlement whenever both parties are in agreement.
Exceptions to the No-Fault Rule
There is one exception to the no fault rule in Arizona. The state allows for the so-called covenant marriage and the conditions for the dissolution of this union are different from the standard ones.
A covenant marriage is the same legal union as other marriages but the spouses undergo counseling before saying their “I dos.” The aim of such counseling is to strengthen the bond between the two people and potentially reduce the risk of a marriage termination.
Whenever a covenant marriage has occurred, fault-based divorces will be possible. In this instance, the parties can divorce solely if both of them agree to it or if special circumstances exist. Some of these special circumstances include adultery, incarceration of one spouse, domestic violence, alcohol or drug abuse.
A Few Other Legal Considerations
There’s a wrong belief that no-fault divorce proceedings are a powerful tool for avoiding lengthy and complicated court battles. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case.
Issues like custody of children and alimony may still be a massive source among the former spouses in states like Arizona. Whenever the two parties cannot reach an agreement about these important aspects of the separation, the court case will have to be taken to court.
One more thing that can potentially complicate the process is that spouses may still contest the divorce. When one person files for a divorce and the other disagrees, they may request a conciliation meeting. This way, the divorce proceedings will be halted temporarily.
As already mentioned factors like character flaws and alcohol abuse, for example, are not going to be taken in consideration whenever the court has to make a decision about the no fault divorce in Arizona. These factors, however, will matter when the best interest of children is being examined for custody determination.