The Impact of Divorce On Your Career

Any big stress in your life can have a potential impact on your career. Divorce ranks high among life stressors but it also directly impacts your schedule and mental acuity. Your divorce requires not only emotional energy, but lots of time off from work to meet with your attorney or mediator and days off for court appearances. This can have a detrimental effect on your career success. Keep it all together by following these steps:

  • Minimize time off. Find out if your attorney or mediator can meet with you on weekends. Save your personal days for court appearances which are always scheduled during business hours.
  • Talk to your boss. Be up front about what you are going through and be clear that you are dedicated to your job. Make it clear you will go above and beyond your duties by working at night, from home, or by taking on additional responsibility once your case has concluded.
  • Look the part. Be particularly careful to present an outer appearance of success, clarity, and dedication to your job at all times. Dress well. Keep your office space organized.
  • Control what you can and let go of the rest. You can minimize the impact on your workplace by taking personal calls away from your co-workers and having breakdowns in the bathroom alone, but you have no control over your spouse showing up at your office or your company being notified that your wages are being garnished for child support. You can’t control everything and no one expects you to.

When you are facing a divorce, you have many questions. Talk with an attorney who understands your concerns and is available to answer your questions. The Sampair Group services all of Maricopa County and our attorneys are ready to discuss your options with you today.

Do Assets Need To Be Divided During a Divorce?

Divorce is so complicated because it involves complex financial calculations and formulas. The actual ending of your relationship to each is quite simple. Divorce takes so much time and money because the assets and debts of the marriage must be divided and often there are important issues regarding children. You may wonder then if it is possible to divorce without dividing up assets. Understanding what can happen to your assets during a divorce is important.

In general, with certain important exceptions, any assets or debts acquired during your marriage by either of you are community assets and debts.They belongs to both of you and must be divided in the divorce. The ownership of community propertymust be addressed in your divorce (the exception to this would be if you have had a marriage of very short duration and have not had time to acquire any community assets or debts).

You don’t need to go to court to have this division occur. You and your spouse can create a settlement agreement on your own.Decide how you want to split everything up. If you agree, it’s a fairly simple matter for your attorney to draft the divorce papers and move your divorce through the courts quickly without undue delay. Even if you can’t decide on your own, an attorney or mediator can help you quickly divide everything so that your divorce can move forward without contest.

Some spouses keep things completely separate throughout their marriage, never putting two names on any asset or debt. Although these items are legally community property, this can simplify your divorce if you agree that each will own or be responsible for assets or debts currently in the spouse’s own names.

The Sampair Grouphandles divorce and family law cases in the Mesa, Phoenix, and Glendale areas of Arizona. Our attorneys are uniquely qualified to handle your case with attention to detail. Call our office to schedule a convenient appointment today.

Should We Stay Together For The Kids?

After many years of marriage, the stresses may seem to increase with each year passing. You and your spouse may be at the breaking point where you are pondering the idea of divorce, but knowing how it would impact the children may stop those thoughts. However, it is also important to wonder if staying together for the children is any better.

There is no clear answer to how to approach this situation, and each circumstance is different. It’s important to think about the children’s best interests. Are they better off in a home where their parents are constantly fighting and are unhappy most of the time or would they benefit more down the road if mom and dad were not together, but they were each happier?

Staying together “for the kids” certainly comes with risks. If you are miserable in your marriage, your family may be loaded with arguments, anger, frustration and pain. If you are a couple that cannot be civil or handle conflict rationally with each other, your child may learn these bad parenting skills and be negatively impacted by them.

Another risk that comes with staying married for the sake of the children is that your child may be neglected while you and your spouse are wrapped up in their own conflicts. It may be physical neglect, such as the parents completely check out of parenting, or it may be emotional neglect, and the parents may not show up together for the child’s important events or may try and alienate the child from the other parent.

If you and your spouse cannot co-parent effectively while living in the same household, you may want to rethink the situation and realize that co-parenting from separate homes may be what is best for your child.

There are times, however, when the child will benefit if the family stays intact, even if the parents are no longer in love with each other. Co-parenting under the same roof is better as long as each parent can stay civil and keep the children out of their arguments and conflict.

For more information on child custody and family law, look to the Glendale and Phoenix family law attorneys at The Sampair Group.

Custody and Your Child’s School

When you’re going through a custody case, you instinct may be to try to keep it quiet for as long as possible, in order to protect your child. It is a lot to deal with and if suddenly everyone your child knows is aware of it, it can be overwhelming. Although you might not be ready to tell the world, it is important to communicate with your child’s school about what is happening.

Because of the situation at home, your child’s behavior at school may be impacted. It’s a good idea to communicate with your child’s teacher so she is prepared to help your child should emotions surface at school. Children react in many different ways and your child’s teacher could be puzzled by a sudden behavior change if she doesn’t know what’s happening inside your family. It is also possible that your child may decide to open up to the teacher about the situation, so you want her to be in the loop. The school may also have resources for children going through divorce, such as counseling or support groups. Peer group meetings can be of invaluable help for your child so he can see that other kids are coping with the same issues.

Once you have a temporary or permanent order of custody, you will want to give a copy to the school, particularly if you want restrictions placed on whether your ex can pick your child up or take him out of school. They need to know who is the custodial parent and who has decision-making authority. If the non-custodial parents wants to stay informed with copies of notices, report cards, and parent-teacher conferences, the school may need a copy of the order to provide these as well.

When you need an attorney who will stand up for you, call the Sampair Group in Scottsdale, Paradise Valley and Glendale. We’re ready to take your call.

Can I refuse to sign the affidavit of paternity?

Question:

Can I refuse to sign the affidavit of paternity?

I am about to enter into a paternity case. I tested positive for a DNA test. What happens if I refuse to sign the affidavit of paternity at the court hearing?

Answer:

If you were confirmed to be the father of the child, the Judge will declare that you are the father. There will no longer be any need for you to sign an Affidavit of Paternity.

Good luck!

Patrick Sampair
The Sampair Group, PLLC

Offices Valley-wide:
Arrowhead: 17235 N. 75th Avenue, Suite E-100, Glendale, AZ
City North: 5450 E High St #300, Phoenix, AZ
East Valley: 1830 S. Alma School #114, Mesa, AZ

West Valley: 623.218.1000
Phoenix: 602.997.7717
East Valley: 480.636.1333

To read more of Phoenix child custody law attorney Patrick Sampair’s answers on Avvo and be sure to check out his child custody page, or if you have a question for Mr. Sampair ask him directly at: https://www.sampair.com/.

How to Survive a Custody Battle

If you’re involved in a custody case that’s ugly or about to get ugly, it’s one of the most challenging things you will ever face. You will get through this though! Keep these tips in mind to keep your sanity.

  • Keep your kids out of it. As hard as it is to keep them uninvolved, it’s important. Hearing parents say negative things about each other is only going to hurt your child.
  • Keep a journal. A journal will help you not only track when parenting time is being exercised by you and your ex, but it also allows you to detail your involvement in your child’s life. This could be useful at your trial.
  • Find a way to blow off steam. You need an outlet for your emotions because there are going to be days when you’re going to feel very frustrated. Plan regular exercise, time with friends, and fun things to keep your head together through the tough times.
  • Try to find a settlement. Because custody trials are painful, work with your attorney or mediator to try to find a solution before you have to go to a trial.
  • Limit contact with your ex. Keep it all business – transferring your child and handling finances. Try to avoid confrontations and outbursts. They aren’t going to help since your situation is being decided in the legal arena, not in any blow up you might have with each other.
  • Stick to your temporary orders. Even if you think your temporary custody order is unfair, stick to it to show the judge you are reliable and law-abiding.
  • Don’t listen to well-meaning advice. Only you and your attorney know all the facts about your case. Friends and family may try to tell you what to do, but ultimately the case needs to be decided according to the law.

The Sampair Group is your choice for family law cases in Maricopa County. Call us for an appointment with one of our knowledgeable attorneys now.

Making a Fresh Start After Divorce

Surviving your divorce takes strength and determination. When you emerge on the other side, you are ready for a fresh start and a chance to create the life that will make you happy.

The most important thing to do is think about what you really want. What are your goals and dreams? What will make you feel happy? It takes time to come out of the divorce fog and really see what will make you feel good about your life, but it’s definitely worth taking the time to consider all of your options. You might be ready for a big change like going back to school, finding a new job, taking up an exciting new hobby, or losing weight. This is a great time in your life to make drastic changes and explore options and new avenues.

You will need to take into account some practical considerations, and money is at the top of the list. Create a reasonable budget for yourself that allows you to cover all of your monthly and recurring expenses with your new household income.  Figure out exactly how much you need each month to pay your bills, then set aside some money each month for savings or emergencies and finally review how much discretionary income you have left to play with.

Dating may be part of your fresh start or you might feel you just aren’t ready to jump in yet. Listen to your instincts and take the time to heal your heart. Allow your friends to slowly lead you into the dating scene when you are ready and don’t forget to consider online dating.

Keep in mind that if you have children, this is a time of great change for them as well. While it is important for you to find your own way and make big changes in your own life, make sure your kids don’t feel bewildered by too many changes all at once. Strive to create some consistency, while at the same time allowing yourself the space you need to figure out where your life is going from here.

The Sampair Group is available to help you with your divorce, custody case, or post-decree modifications. Our highly experienced attorneys represent clients in the Glendale, Mesa, and Phoenix areas of Arizona. Make an appointment today.

Sharing Children’s Expenses After Divorce

Child support is ordered as a set amount, but most orders also include language about sharing children’s expenses, such as medical co-pays, school supplies, clothing, extra-curricular costs and equipment, music lessons, and more.

It can be difficult to keep track of these additional expenses if you are the parent seeking to be reimbursed. Follow these suggestions for staying organized.

  • Have bills sent directly to your ex. This is easiest to do with medical bills. This avoids the repayment problem and makes your ex legally responsible to the medical provider, keeping you out of it. The only problem is if you ex doesn’t pay, the provider may refuse to treat your child until the account is current. You may also be able to do this with extra-curricular fees or sports teams costs.
  • Get separate receipts. If you go to Target to buy school supplies as well as toilet paper and window cleaner, get a separate receipt for the items your ex needs to reimburse you for. It will make tracking expenses easier.
  • Scan in all receipts that need to go to your ex. Keep the originals. Send the scans with a cover letter showing the detailed breakdown of the expenses and the amount due to you.
  • Keep a spreadsheet of all expenses. Mark when you send them to your ex and when you are reimbursed. This will allow you to see at a glance what you have not been repaid for.
  • Get estimates when possible. When large costs are looming, such as braces or the cost of a new musical instrument, get an estimate of the cost in advance and send it to your ex. This allows him or her to plan and is a very courteous way to show you want to work cooperatively.
  • Consider using an app. There are now several apps specifically designed for co-parents that allows you to create entries and attach receipts. You and your ex use the app together and can track expenses this way.

Call the Sampair Group to discuss your child support case. We are located in Maricopa County, Arizona and are ready to work with you. Make an appointment today.

Modifying Your Child Support Order

Under federal and state law, parents have a right to request a modification of a child support order. Both parents must reach an agreement to modify the child support order. If there is no agreement between both parties, a judge can be asked to approve the change as long as it is explained why the modification need is justified and how the amount modification that is requested will benefit the child. In this court hearing, you must be able to show evidence that circumstances have changed since the existing order. Depending on the circumstances, the judge will decide if the modification will be temporary or permanent. A permanent modification order will remain in effect until child support is no longer needed, or if the order is again modified in the future. If you are unsure of whether you have valid reasons for a child support order modifications, contact a Glendale Family Law professional. Here are some examples of the types of changes that support a modification order:

Temporary

  • a child’s medical emergency
  • a temporary inability for the payer to be able to make child support payments, whether it be for a illness, temporary financial burden, medical emergency
  • temporary financial or medical hardship for the recipient parent

Permanent

  • either parent has lost their job or gets new employment with a decreased income
  • one or both parents remarry and the new spouse’s income increases the household income
  • the cost of living increases  for one or both parents
  • either parent becomes disabled
  • the child’s needs have changed (education, health, etc.)
  • child support laws have changed

 

Through Arizona Child Support Order Guidelines, when one parent files a Petition to Modify Child Support, the filing party will serve the other party with the petition, allowing for response from the other party, who may choose to do nothing or request a hearing. If the party that is served with the petition is a resident of Arizona, they have 20 days from the date served to respond. If they are not a resident of Arizona, they have 30 days to respond. It is then up to the judge to set a hearing date and decide how to proceed with the case.

If you have found yourself in a situation where you are unable to pay support because you have lost a job or your income has decreased significantly, do not wait to modify your child support order. Contact an experience Phoenix divorce lawyer at The Sampair Group for legal representation in any family law dispute.

Celebrating Your Child’s Birthday After Divorce

Your child’s birthday is a day that is important to you, your child, and your ex. Deciding how to share time for your child’s birthday can be done as part of your parenting plan, or it can be something you work out in the future. It is often best to negotiate the birthday when you are working out holiday schedules. There are a lot of options to consider.

You and the other parent could alternate years for your child’s birthday. This would mean that one of you would not see your child on the actual birthday each year.  You and the other parent could also share the day, splitting it in half. It is also possible to share the day, or some of the day, together as a family. If one of you will not see your child on the birthday, you can bridge the physical gap with Skype or phone calls, saving cards and presents for when you can be together in person to celebrate.

How you spend time on your child’s birthday will change as he grows. Children who are elementary aged often have separate parties for friends and for relatives. You may decide that you both want to be present for the friends party. It is common for parents to have separate family parties so members of their own families can celebrate the birthday. Teens may be more interested in when they can be with their friends than when they can be with their parents for their birthdays.

Another issue to consider when it comes to birthdays are expenses. If you are having a child’s party at a venue, you might consider sharing the cost of the party with each other. Some parents give gifts together on birthdays or coordinate with each other to avoid duplicate gifts.

Call the Sampair Group for advice about your divorce or family law in the Glendale, Mesa, and Phoenix areas of Arizona. Our attorneys offer compassionate and careful advice. Call us today.