Legal professionals in Arizona and other states have started calling January "Divorce Month." Statistics from a study conducted in 2016 at the University of Washington confirmed that divorce filings went up in the month of January from the year 2001 to 2015. Additionally, searches for the word "divorce" or "divorce party" go up during January in search engines and online platforms.
Marital dissolution will almost always require division (or some other solution) for retirement assets. Furthermore, if the plan (such as a 401k) falls under a particular federal law ('ERISA'), you will likely need a special, extra order called a "qualified domestic relations order" ('QDRO'). The QDRO will allow funds to be transferred without either individual incurring financial penalties. Not all plans require this level of attention, but many do.
When divorcing couples enter into property division negotiations, the marital home is usually the most valuable asset discussed. The community property laws in Arizona require marital assets to be divided equally, which means establishing an agreed-upon value for the primary residence is extremely important. This is usually done by qualified real estate appraisers, but it is often a difficult process.
When Arizona residents decide to seek a divorce, there are many areas of concern in how to build a new life. Finances, including credit score, are of great importance since they can determine quality of life after the divorce. There are steps that can be taken before the divorce decree is final that can protect that score and finances overall.
Arizona couples tend to have a few significant assets such as a retirement or bank account that will need to be divided in their divorces. In addition, a couple could own a home that has significant equity that must be split. In some cases, the home will be liquidated with each person sharing a portion of that equity. In others, one person will gain control of the home while the other receives other assets in return.
Couples in Maricopa County who have been married for decades might be more likely to get a divorce than younger couples who have only been together for a few years. Divorce is on the rise for people who are 55 and older, and for people 65 and older, the divorce rate is more than two times higher than it was in 1990. These marriages may be ending in part because of a shift toward the idea that divorce is more acceptable, particularly as people are living longer lives.
No Arizona spouse enters into marriage consciously thinking about divorce. However, it's likely resonating somewhere in their collective subconscious. For years, the conventional wisdom has been that about half of marriages are ultimately doomed to fail, and many studies tend to generally support that supposition. That being the case, many may also expect the initiation of divorce to be a 50/50 proposition, but this is not backed by the statistics. In fact, wives begin dissolution proceedings far more often than husbands.
When Maricopa County couples decide to end their marriage, finances are often a significant concern. Even when a couple is relatively financially stable, divorcing can create a shortfall that can be difficult to recover from. Many experts believe that careful planning before, during and after the divorce can minimize the negative impact that the end of a marriage can have on the financial health of both parties.
Summer is a time when divorce rates tend to spike. People in Arizona who are considering divorce can start preparing by talking to family, attorneys and financial advisers about their plans.
Divorcing parents in Maricopa County often have a challenging time adapting to a new co-parenting relationship. As children move back and forth between parents' homes, some of the changes and disruption can be mitigated by the continuity of their educational schedules. When the summer months come around, co-parenting can require new adjustments so that children continue to enjoy a relaxed, fun summer without unnecessary tension between their parents.