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 their children. A separation agreement may provide that its maintenance terms shall not be modified.

B. In a proceeding for dissolution of marriage or for legal separation, the terms of the separation agreement, except those providing for the support, custody and parenting time of children, are binding on the court unless it finds, after considering the economic circumstances of the parties and any other relevant evidence produced by the parties, on their own motion or on request of the court, that the separation agreement is unfair.

C. If the court finds the separation agreement unfair as to disposition of property or maintenance, it may request the parties to submit a revised separation agreement or may make orders for the disposition of property or maintenance.

D. If the court finds that the separation agreement is not unfair as to disposition of property or maintenance and that it is reasonable as to support, custody and parenting time of children, the separation agreement shall be set forth or incorporated by reference in the decree of dissolution or legal separation and the parties shall be ordered to perform them. If the separation agreement provides that its terms shall not be set forth in the decree, the decree shall identify the separation agreement as incorporated by reference and state that the court has found the terms as to property disposition and maintenance not unfair and the terms as to support, custody and parenting time of children reasonable.

E. Terms of the agreement set forth or incorporated by reference in the decree are enforceable by all remedies available for enforcement of a judgment, including contempt.

F. Except for terms concerning the maintenance of either party and the support, custody or parenting time of children, entry of the decree shall thereafter preclude the modification of the terms of the decree and the property settlement agreement, if any, set forth or incorporated by reference.

G. Notwithstanding subsection F, entry of a decree that sets forth or incorporates by reference a separation agreement that provides that its maintenance terms shall not be modified prevents the court from exercising jurisdiction to modify the decree and the separation agreement regarding maintenance, including a decree entered before July 20, 1996.

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Resource: Arizona State Legislature