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Tucson Family Law Blog

How to provide children with stability after divorce

One of the hardest parts of a divorce for Arizona parents can be dealing with child custody issues and the effect the divorce has on their children. However, good co-parenting practices can help give children a sense of security and stability despite the upheaval.

Children will wonder whether they can go on loving both of their parents or if they are the cause of the divorce. Parents can reassure them by encouraging them to build a relationship with both of them and telling them they had nothing to do with the split. Children may be anxious about how holidays and birthdays will change. If parents can still spend these occasions together, it can be helpful so children do not have to attend two events and feel as though they must choose between their parents. Even if this is not possible, parents should be aware that eventually they will have to be at some of the same events, such as a child's graduation.

Parental alienation and child custody

Many parents in Arizona who are going through a contested custody battle are shocked when a judge awards custody of their children to the other parent. One common reason this occurs in divorce and child custody cases is parental alienation.

The term refers to one parent turning children against the other by making inappropriate comments to children and false accusations against the other parent. This type of behavior is considered harmful to children's wellbeing.

Strategies that might help divorced co-parents

Some Arizona residents who are divorced share a child with their ex-spouse. Most would agree that separating from their child's parent was not an easy thing to do. In addition to sorting through their own pain, they must strive to make decisions that take their child's best interests into consideration.

This might mean that divorced co-parents need to show flexibility when it comes to the time they spend with their children. The court usually sets the calendar for child visitation. Still, there may be times when a parent decides to yield if doing so is in the best interests of the child.

How parents can give their children the best shot at success

In the media, children with parents who have gone through a divorce are often portrayed as doing bad in school, taking drugs, going to jail and dealing with similar problems. The reality, though, is that children with divorced parents can do just as well as other children. Arizona parents may wonder what they can do to help their children after a divorce.

A parent may try to be fantastic or amazing after they go through a divorce in an effort to give their child the best life possible. It may be better to shoot for "good enough." Instead of trying to buy a child's love or making a child feel like they are on vacation when they spend time with a parent, it is better to have a normal routine. This would include doing chores and homework, following the rules and respecting boundaries in the home.

Postnuptial agreements for financial planning

In the past, people in Arizona often thought of prenuptial agreements as either a type of bad luck or a concern only of celebrities or the ultra-rich. When people married at a younger age, they often brought fewer assets and a brand-new career to the relationship. However, a growing number of people are marrying and remarrying at an older age, meaning many of them already own homes or businesses or have children of their own. As a result, prenups have become very useful for a growing number of couples. They do not see these agreements as a negative sign of a pre-planned divorce but as smart thinking about their financial future.

For people who are already married, they may have some of the same concerns that motivate people to sign a prenup, including family inheritance, a privately owned business or complex situations involving their children from past relationships. Postnups may seem even more like an advance plan for a divorce, but some couples may find them to be an important part of their financial plan. There are some circumstances in which they may even be a necessity. For example, small, privately held startups and other businesses can be torn apart in case of a divorce and the resulting property division.

Using the year's calendar in a divorce case

Arizona parents who are going through a divorce may struggle to remember important details about child-related expenses. This is such a stressful time that it can affect some people's ability to answer questions about the child's health care, activities and other events accurately. A calendar can help provide information as well as evidence if there is a dispute.

For example, it is not uncommon for children to attend many birthday parties, and this can mean that gifts represent a significant expense that parents often overlook. Also frequently forgotten are costs related to out-of-town sports events the children participate in. If the child has visited a doctor or therapist during the year, this might be on the calendar too. The calendar is also useful for getting a sense of the time parents spend with the children. This could be a significant piece of evidence in determining custody and support.

When holiday season ends, divorce season begins

Arizona residents may have heard friends and family members talking about divorce more during January than in other months. If this is the case, it follows a trend that many lawyers see. Statistics show that there is a spike in divorce filings in January after the holiday season.

There are many potential reasons why so many spouses opt for divorce at this time of the year. Some partners have been contemplating divorce for some time, but there's always that one thing that holds them back. November has Thanksgiving, and they don't want to ruin everybody's holiday with talk of divorce. Shortly after Thanksgiving ends, the Christmas season begins, and the last thing that they want to do is ruin another holiday for their children or their family. Some unhappy couples just try to keep it going until the start of the new year.

The potential effects of a prenup

When couples living in Arizona contemplate divorce, asset division is often a primary concern. This concern can be heightened if the couple signed a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement.

Prenuptial and postnuptial agreements describe the financial expectations established between spouses before or after a marriage takes place. In many cases, these agreements sharply restrict what a spouse may be expected to provide financially at the time of divorce, such as spousal support or a share in a family business or home.

Why engaged couples should discuss prenups

While most people like to focus on the joy and excitement that surrounds an engagement, it is also important to look at the deeper pragmatic side of it. In order for Arizona couples to avoid a lot of frustration and arguments later on, speaking about finances is essential before they get married. Discussing prenuptial agreements and signing them well before the wedding date can give both of them peace of mind as they move forward with their marriage plans.

Even if a couple decides that a prenuptial agreement is not the right option for them, it can still be beneficial to talk about it. Discussing this legal contract and other financial matters sets expectations for what each individual should expect out of the financial partnership once they get married. They can discuss how they plan to use their money, how much they will save and which assets will belong to each individual and which ones will be shared.

How income disparity affects divorce risk

Divorce is more likely among Arizona couples in which the man earns less money than the woman. However, if they earn a roughly equal amount, they are less likely to split up. A number of studies have shown that despite a rise in the percentage of married women who earn more money than their husbands, attitudes have not changed as rapidly. There is still a great deal of pressure placed on men to be the family breadwinners.

One study found that when a husband does not work full time, the risk of divorce is 33% higher. Some women complain that when their husbands work part-time, they still accumulate debt. A study by the Pew Research Center in 2017 found that just one-quarter of Americans thought it was very important for a mother to provide financially for her children compared to 40% who thought fathers had the same responsibility.

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Law Office of Michael A. Johnson, P.C.
177 N Church Avenue
Suite 311
Tucson, AZ 85701

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