Arizona Family Law Statutes

ARS 25-803 Persons who may originate paternity proceedings

A. Proceedings to establish the maternity or paternity of a child or children and to compel support under this article may be commenced by any of the following: 1. The mother. 2. The father. 3. The guardian, conservator or best friend of a child or children born out of wedlock. 4. A public welfare official […]

ARS 25-813 Default order of paternity

In an action to establish paternity, the court shall enter an order of paternity if either: 1. The service of summons is complete and the respondent fails to appear or otherwise answer. 2. An order for genetic or blood testing has been entered and the respondent fails to appear without cause for an appointment to […]

ARS 25-403.02 Parenting Plans

A. If the child’s parents cannot agree on a plan for legal decision-making or parenting time, each parent must submit a proposed parenting plan. B. Consistent with the child’s best interests in section 25-403 and sections 25-403.03, 25-403.04 and 25-403.05, the court shall adopt a parenting plan that provides for both parents to share legal […]

ARS 25-814 Presumption of paternity

A. A man is presumed to be the father of the child if: 1. He and the mother of the child were married at any time in the ten months immediately preceding the birth or the child is born within ten months after the marriage is terminated by death, annulment, declaration of invalidity or dissolution […]

ARS 25-1031 Initial child custody jurisdiction

A. Except as otherwise provided in section 25-1034, a court of this state has jurisdiction to make an initial child custody determination only if any of the following is true: 1. This state is the home state of the child on the date of the commencement of the proceeding, or was the home state of […]

ARS 25-1032 Exclusive continuing jurisdiction

A. Except as otherwise provided in section 25-1034, a court of this state that has made a child custody determination consistent with section 25-1031 or 25-1033 has exclusive, continuing jurisdiction over the determination until either of the following is true: 1. A court of this state determines that neither the child, nor the child and […]

ARS 25-403 Legal Decision Making

A. The court shall determine legal decision-making and parenting time, either originally or on petition for modification, in accordance with the best interests of the child. The court shall consider all factors that are relevant to the child’s physical and emotional well-being, including: The past, present and potential future relationship between the parent and the […]

ARS 25-1034 Temporary emergency jurisdiction

A. A court of this state has temporary emergency jurisdiction if the child is present in this state and the child has been abandoned or it is necessary in an emergency to protect the child because the child, or a sibling or parent of the child, is subjected to or threatened with mistreatment or abuse. […]

ARS 25-408 Rights of Noncustodial Parents, Parenting Time, Relocation of Child

A. If by written agreement or court order both parents are entitled to joint legal decision-making or parenting time and both parents reside in the state, at least forty-five days’ advance written notice shall be provided to the other parent before a parent may do either of the following: Relocate the child outside the state. […]

ARS 25-414 Violation of Visitation and Parenting Time Rights

What happens if a parent’s visitation rights are violated? A. If the court, based on a verified petition and after it gives reasonable notice to an alleged violating parent and an opportunity for that person to be heard, finds that a parent has refused without good cause to comply with a visitation or parenting time […]

ARS 25-312 Dissolution of Marriage

The court shall enter a decree of dissolution of marriage if it finds each of the following: That one of the parties, at the time the action was commenced, was domiciled in this state, or was stationed in this state while a member of the armed services, and that in either case the domicile or […]

ARS 25-403.01 Sole and Joint Legal Decision Making

A. In awarding legal decision-making, the court may order sole legal decision-making or joint legal decision-making. B. In determining the level of decision-making that is in the child’s best interests, the court shall consider the factors prescribed in section 25-403, subsection A and all of the following: The agreement or lack of an agreement by […]

ARS 25-313 Decree of Legal Separation

The court shall enter a decree of legal separation if it finds each of the following: That one of the parties at the time the action was commenced was domiciled in this state or was stationed in this state while a member of the armed services. The conciliation provisions of section 25-381.09 and the provisions […]

ARS 25-311 Jurisdiction

A. The superior court is vested with original jurisdiction to hear and decide all matters arising pursuant to this chapter and pursuant to chapter 4, article 1 of this title. B. A proceeding for dissolution of marriage or legal separation shall be entitled, “in re the marriage of _____________ and _______________.” A custody or support […]

ARS 25-320 Determining the Amount of Child Support

A. In a proceeding for dissolution of marriage, legal separation, maintenance or child support, the court may order either or both parents owing a duty of support to a child, born to or adopted by the parents, to pay an amount reasonable and necessary for support of the child, without regard to marital misconduct. B. […]

ARS 13-3601 Domestic Violence Defined

A. “Domestic violence” means any act that is a dangerous crime against children as defined in section 13-705 or an offense prescribed in section 13-1102, 13-1103, 13-1104, 13-1105, 13-1201, 13-1202, 13-1203, 13-1204, 13-1302, 13-1303, 13-1304, 13-1406, 13-1502, 13-1503, 13-1504, 13-1602 or 13-2810, section 13-2904, subsection A, paragraph 1, 2, 3 or 6, section 13-2910, subsection […]

ARS 25-327 Modification or Termination of Maintenance, Support and Property Division

A. Except as otherwise provided in section 25-317, subsections F and G, the provisions of any decree respecting maintenance or support may be modified or terminated only on a showing of changed circumstances that are substantial and continuing except as to any amount that may have accrued as an arrearage before the date of notice […]

ARS 13-3601-02 Aggravated Domestic Violence

A. A person is guilty of aggravated domestic violence if the person within a period of eighty-four months commits a third or subsequent violation of a domestic violence offense or is convicted of a violation of a domestic violence offense and has previously been convicted of any combination of convictions of a domestic violence offense […]

ars 13-3602 Order of Protection

A. A person may file a verified petition, as in civil actions, with a magistrate, justice of the peace or superior court judge for an order of protection for the purpose of restraining a person from committing an act included in domestic violence. If the person is a minor, the parent, legal guardian or person […]

ars 13-3601-01 Domestic Violence Treatment

A. The judge shall order a person who is convicted of a misdemeanor domestic violence offense to complete a domestic violence offender treatment program that is provided by a facility approved by the department of health services or a probation department. If a person has previously been ordered to complete a domestic violence offender treatment […]

ARS 25-403.03 Substance Abuse and Child Custody

A. If the court determines that a parent has abused drugs or alcohol or has been convicted of any drug offense under title 13, chapter 34 or any violation of section 28-1381, 28-1382 or 28-1383 within twelve months before the petition or the request for legal decision-making or parenting time is filed, there is a […]

ARS 25-381.08 Conciliation Court Jurisdiction

Whenever any controversy exists between spouses which may, unless a reconciliation is achieved, result in the legal separation, dissolution or annulment of the marriage or in the disruption of the household, and there is any minor child of the spouses or either of them whose welfare might be affected thereby, the conciliation court shall have […]

ARS 25-502 Jurisdiction, Venue, and Procedure (Support)

A. The superior court has original jurisdiction in proceedings brought by the department, its agents, a person having physical custody of a child or a party to the case to establish, enforce or modify the duties of support as prescribed in this chapter. All such proceedings are civil actions except as provided in section 25-511. […]

ARS 25-319 Maintenance Computation Factors

A. In a proceeding for dissolution of marriage or legal separation, or a proceeding for maintenance following dissolution of the marriage by a court that lacked personal jurisdiction over the absent spouse, the court may grant a maintenance order for either spouse for any of the following reasons if it finds that the spouse seeking […]

Arizona Child Abandonment Laws ARS 8-201 & ARS 8-531

Child abandonment in the AZ is a serious offense that can result in significant legal consequences, including fines and imprisonment, and can carry particularly severe penalties if it results in harm to the child. In addition to criminal law, child abandonment also has implications on family law. Here are 2 Arizona child abandonment laws. “ARS” […]

ARS 25-111 Covenant Marriages

A. A marriage shall not be contracted by agreement without a marriage ceremony. B. A marriage contracted within this state is not valid unless all of the following occur: A license is issued as provided in this title. The marriage is solemnized by a person authorized by law to solemnize marriages or by a person […]

ARS 25-404 Temporary Orders

A. A party to a legal decision-making and parenting time proceeding may move for a temporary order. This motion must be supported by pleadings as provided in section 25-411. The court may award temporary legal decision-making and parenting time under the standards of section 25-403 after a hearing, or, if there is no objection, solely […]

ARS 25-322 Payment of Maintenance or Support

A. Except as provided in section 46-441, the court shall order that maintenance or support payments be made to the support payment clearinghouse for remittance to the person entitled to receive the payments unless the parties agree otherwise. B. The clerk of the court or the support payment clearinghouse shall maintain records listing the amount […]

ARS 13-3005 Interception of Electronic Communications

A. Except as provided in this section and section 13-3012, a person is guilty of a class 5 felony who either: Intentionally intercepts a wire or electronic communication to which he is not a party, or aids, authorizes, employs, procures or permits another to so do, without the consent of either a sender or receiver […]

ARS 25-101 Void and Prohibited Marriages

A. Marriage between parents and children, including grandparents and grandchildren of every degree, between brothers and sisters of the one-half as well as the whole blood, and between uncles and nieces, aunts and nephews and between first cousins, is prohibited and void. B. Notwithstanding subsection A, first cousins may marry if both are sixty-five years […]

ARS 25-112 Marriages Contracted in Another State

A. Marriages valid by the laws of the place where contracted are valid in this state, except marriages that are void and prohibited by section 25-101. B. Marriages solemnized in another state or country by parties intending at the time to reside in this state shall have the same legal consequences and effect as if […]

ARS 25-406 Investigations and Reports

A. In contested legal decision-making and parenting time proceedings, and in other custody proceedings if a parent or the child’s custodian so requests, the court may order an investigation and report concerning legal decision-making or parenting time arrangements for the child. The investigation and report may be made by the court social service agency, the […]

ARS 25-301 Grounds for Annulment

Superior courts may dissolve a marriage, and may adjudge a marriage to be null and void when the cause alleged constitutes an impediment rendering the marriage void. Read this article for information on annulments in Arizona. Resource: Arizona State Legislature The marriage annulment attorneys at Stewart Law Group are ready to help. Contact Us

ARS 25-403.06 Parental Access to Records

A. Unless otherwise provided by court order or law, on reasonable request both parents are entitled to have equal access to prescription medication, documents and other information concerning the child’s education and physical, mental, moral and emotional health including medical, school, police, court and other records directly from the custodian of the records or from […]

ARS 25-405 Interviews by Court

A. The court may interview the child in chambers to ascertain the child’s wishes as to the child’s custodian and as to parenting time. B. The court may seek the advice of professional personnel, whether or not employed by the court on a regular basis. The advice given shall be in writing and shall be […]

ARS 25-302 Procedure for Annulment

A. The jurisdictional requirements and procedure for obtaining an annulment shall be the same as if the matter were one for dissolution of marriage. B. If grounds for annulment exist, the court to the extent that it has jurisdiction to do so, shall divide the property of the parties and shall establish the rights and […]

ARS 25-201 Premarital Agreements

In this article, unless the context otherwise requires: “Premarital agreement” means an agreement between prospective spouses that is made in contemplation of marriage and that is effective on marriage. “Property” means an interest, present or future, legal or equitable, vested or contingent, in real or personal property, including income and earnings. For more information about […]

ARS 25-411 Modification of Custody

A. A person shall not make a motion to modify a legal decision-making or parenting time decree earlier than one year after its date, unless the court permits it to be made on the basis of affidavits that there is reason to believe the child’s present environment may seriously endanger the child’s physical, mental, moral […]

ARS 25-211 Property Acquired During Marriage

A. All property acquired by either husband or wife during the marriage is the community property of the husband and wife except for property that is: Acquired by gift, devise or descent. Acquired after service of a petition for dissolution of marriage, legal separation or annulment if the petition results in a decree of dissolution […]

ARS 25-213 Separate Property

A. A spouse’s real and personal property that is owned by that spouse before marriage and that is acquired by that spouse during the marriage by gift, devise or descent, and the increase, rents, issues and profits of that property, is the separate property of that spouse. B. Property that is acquired by a spouse […]

ARS 25-202 Enforcement of Premarital Agreements

A. A premarital agreement must be in writing and signed by both parties. The agreement is enforceable without consideration. B. The agreement becomes effective on marriage of the parties. C. The agreement is not enforceable if the person against whom enforcement is sought proves either of the following: The person did not execute the agreement […]

ARS 25-215 Liability of Community Property and Separate Property for Debts

A. The separate property of a spouse shall not be liable for the separate debts or obligations of the other spouse, absent agreement of the property owner to the contrary. B. The community property is liable for the premarital separate debts or other liabilities of a spouse, incurred after September 1, 1973 but only to […]

ARS 25-203 Scope of Premarital Agreement

A. Parties to a premarital agreement may contract with respect to: The rights and obligations of each of the parties in any of the property of either or both of them whenever and wherever acquired or located. The right to buy, sell, use, transfer, exchange, abandon, lease, consume, expend, assign or create a security interest […]

ARS 25-318 Disposition of Property

A. In a proceeding for dissolution of the marriage, or for legal separation, or in a proceeding for disposition of property following dissolution of the marriage by a court which previously lacked personal jurisdiction over the absent spouse or previously lacked jurisdiction to dispose of the property, the court shall assign each spouse’s sole and […]

ARS 25-1202 Family Law Definitions

In this chapter, unless the context otherwise requires: “Child” means an individual, whether over or under the age of majority, who is or is alleged to be owed a duty of support by the individual’s parent or who is or is alleged to be the beneficiary of a support order directed to the parent. “Child […]

ARS 25-500 Child Custody Definitions

In this chapter, unless the context otherwise requires: “Arrearage” means the total unpaid support owed, including child support, past support, spousal maintenance and interest. “Business day” means a day when state offices are open for regular business. “Child support guidelines” means the child support guidelines that are adopted by the state supreme court. “Child support […]

ARS 25-403.03 Domestic Violence and Child Abuse

ARS 25-403.03 Domestic Violence and Child Abuse A. Notwithstanding subsection D of this section, joint custody shall not be awarded if the court makes a finding of the existence of significant domestic violence pursuant to section 13-3601 or if the court finds by a preponderance of the evidence that there has been a significant history […]

ARS 25-204 Amendment or Revocation of Agreement

After marriage, a premarital agreement may be amended or revoked only by a written agreement signed by the parties. The amended agreement or the revocation is enforceable without consideration.

ARS 25-402 Child Custody Jurisdiction

A. Before it conducts a proceeding concerning legal decision-making or parenting time, including a proceeding to determine the legal decision-making or visitation of a nonparent, a court in this state first must confirm its authority to do so to the exclusion of any other state, Indian tribe or foreign nation by complying with the uniform […]

ARS 25-401 Definitions of Child Custody

In this chapter, unless the context otherwise requires: “In loco parentis” means a person who has been treated as a parent by a child and who has formed a meaningful parental relationship with a child for a substantial period of time. “Joint legal decision-making” means both parents share decision-making and neither parent’s rights or responsibilities […]

ARS 25-324 Attorney Fees

A. The court from time to time, after considering the financial resources of both parties and the reasonableness of the positions each party has taken throughout the proceedings, may order a party to pay a reasonable amount to the other party for the costs and expenses of maintaining or defending any proceeding under this chapter […]

ARS 25-325 Decree of Finality

A. A decree of dissolution of marriage or of legal separation is final when entered, subject to the right of appeal. An appeal from the decree of dissolution that does not challenge the finding that the marriage is irretrievably broken does not delay the finality of that provision of the decree that dissolves the marriage […]

ARS 25-409 Third Party Rights

A. Pursuant to section 25-402, subsection B, paragraph 2, a person other than a legal parent may petition the superior court for legal decision-making authority or placement of the child. The court shall summarily deny a petition unless it finds that the petitioner’s initial pleading establishes that all of the following are true: The person […]

ARS 25-317 Separation Agreements

A. To promote amicable settlement of disputes between parties to a marriage attendant on their separation or the dissolution of their marriage, the parties may enter into a written separation agreement containing provisions for disposition of any property owned by either of them, maintenance of either of them, and support, custody and parenting time of […]

ARS 25-315 Temporary Order or Preliminary Injunction

A. In all actions for dissolution of marriage, for legal separation or for annulment, the clerk of the court shall pursuant to order of the superior court issue a preliminary injunction in the following manner: The preliminary injunction shall be directed to each party to the action and contain the following orders: That both parties […]

ARS 25-314 Pleadings for Dissolution of Marriage

A. The verified petition in a proceeding for dissolution of marriage or legal separation shall allege that the marriage is irretrievably broken or that one or both of the parties desire to live separate and apart, or, if the marriage is a covenant marriage, any of the grounds prescribed in section 25-903 or 25-904, whichever […]

ARS 25-352 Parent Education Program

A. In an action for dissolution of marriage, legal separation or annulment that involves a natural or an adopted minor, unemancipated child who is common to the parties or in any paternity proceeding under chapter 6, article 1 of this title in which a party has requested that the court determine custody, specific parenting time […]

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