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Parental alienation syndrome

When two Arizona residents have a child, one parent is often granted primary physical custody while the other parent is granted visitation rights. In some cases, however, one parent may decide that they do not want the other parent to be involved in their child's life; as such, they may attempt to alienate the child from the other parent.

Considerations for Arizona child custody

Many Arizona parents who divorce have some sort of joint legal and physical custody of their children. This usually presents itself as the children spending roughly equal amounts of time with both parents, with both parents also entitled to make decision about their children's lives. However, in some cases joint custody may not be desirable or practical for reasons of safety, such as child or spousal abuse. In these cases, Arizona law provides for temporary physical custody and decision-making rights to fall exclusively to one parent until the matter is resolved.

Virtual visitation and Arizona child custody

Arizona parents embroiled in child custody disputes may have another avenue available to ensure visitation. Known as virtual visitation, this kind of arrangement is a catch-all term encompassing the use of telephones and Internet resources, such as email, video chat and instant messaging, to allow children to stay in touch with a non-custodial parent when they cannot be present. While Arizona has no formalized law concerning virtual visitation, it is nevertheless considered a viable option for enhanced visitation.

When parents do not exercise their visitation rights

Nothing can be more frustrating to an Arizona custodial parent than when the other parent doesn't show up to pick up their child for his or her scheduled visitation. The custodial parent may have to scramble to find child care and the child may be upset, feeling rejected. Parents may wonder if there is anything they can do about this failure to exercise parenting time.

The meaning of "reasonable visitation" in custody orders

When an Arizona court is making a child custody determination in a divorce proceeding, it might not make the matter of visitation very definable for the noncustodial parent. Instead, the court may give the noncustodial parent "reasonable visitation" rights in the order. Generally, this means that both parents are left to decide a parental visitation schedule themselves.

When does a court have initial child custody jurisdiction?

Jurisdiction refers to the right of a court to preside over a case, and in child custody situations, the state in which the child resides typically determines what court will preside over a dispute. Timing may be important, and other issues could play a role as well. In Arizona, initial child custody jurisdiction in the state is typically appropriate if the child resides in the state at the time the proceeding begins or has resided in the state within the prior six months with the parent or acting person still living in the state as the proceeding begins.

Arizona third-party child custody rights

In Arizona, a third party who is not the biological parent of a child may file a petition to obtain legal and residential custody of the child if certain circumstances apply. In order to be able to file for custody as a third party, the person must first have a relationship that is in loco parentis to the child, which means in place of the parent. Commonly, people who fall into this category are a child's grandparents.

Child custody arrangements in Arizona

In Arizona, the courts will step in to make parenting time decisions when the parents are unable to come to an arrangement on their own. Under state law, when the courts are required to intervene, they try to choose a plan that gives both parents time with the child and allows for them to share in the legal decision-making aspects of child rearing. Ultimately, the court's main concern with child custody matters is to adopt a plan that is in the child's best interests.

Study links divorce to higher risk of childhood obesity

A new study has linked weight gain in children to divorce, a claim that all divorced parents should be aware of to make sure their kids are healthy and happy during their childhood. Obesity has become a hot issue in the United States, especially since more adolescents are being diagnosed with type II diabetes. 

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Tucson, AZ 85701

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