Spousal Maintenance: How We Can Help

Jul 26

Alimony, otherwise known as spousal maintenance in Arizona, is based upon principles of equity (what is fair in the particular situation). In order to simplify and curtail the prolix factors the court must consider, it is recommended that you obtain specialized legal counsel from Attorney Hope Fruchtman. She strives to be the best family law attorney in Scottsdale AZ. In order to meet this high bar, the Fruchtman Law Firm has developed a streamlined process to calculate and/or mitigate the costs of spousal maintenance for you.

Pro se litigants who go into court may have read a few websites and gathered some basic information on the process. The concept of spousal support primarily turns upon whether one is earning significantly more than the other. The overall focus is whether the marriage commitment took an unfair toll on one spouse by committing to housekeeping and child rearing, etc. Other factors may include whether the spouse is disabled or educated enough to maintain a satisfactory level of independence after the divorce. By preparing your spouse for separation with education, a full-time position, and a place of their own before the divorce, you are in a better position to argue against imposing spousal support payments.

But, remember, a divorce is essentially a contract. Contracts are strictly construed. It is, therefore, necessary for the most straightforward, concise, and clear wording to be drawn up in the terms of a divorce settlement. The same is true on appeal. If you disagree with the judge’s ruling and feel he was being biased and unreasonable regarding some aspect of the case, you will need to present your claims succinctly to the appellate courts. The sad reality is that the courts often lack the capacity to tediously sift through rambling pro se filings. The filings often get fast-tracked for denials under the theory of conserving judicial resources in all but the most fundamental tersely pled errors.

The judges also tend to rely upon and trust the opinions of specialists in this field of practice like Attorney Hope Fruchtman of the Fruchtman law firm. When you hire this family law attorney in Scottsdale AZ you will be able to help the judge to see the merit of your arguments as more persuasive in many cases.

How a Lawyer Can Help Your Interstate Custody Case

Jul 09

Child custody cases are complicated and not many people know exactly what to do when problems and disagreements arise. Things can get even more difficult to navigate during interstate custody cases where there may be confusion about which laws are being upheld. While interstate custody cases aren’t rare, they are still complicated as are most court proceedings and should usually be handled by a professional.

Just knowing your rights and the laws can be difficult, which is why contacting a Scottsdale AZ family attorney could be your best option for success in your case. Throughout her career, Attorney Hope Fruchtman has helped a lot of families in this situation and suggests obtaining an attorney for any interstate custody case that you may be facing.

Just filing to open an interstate custody case can be a very time-consuming process, especially without any legal experience. While most states do offer a DIY document center, even these can be confusing and if they aren’t filled out properly it is likely that they could be rejected and you will have to start from the beginning.

Additionally, even if the outcome of the case turns out the way you were hoping, there are still questions that need to be asked. There are a lot of details that can come up with custody, visitation, and expenses that most people without legal training wouldn’t even think to ask, but they can sometimes be extremely important. Not being aware of the law concerning a court order is usually not a good enough argument in a custody case. Breaking a court order could result in fines, jail time, or even losing visitation of your child. These are risks that not many people want to take when it comes to the well-being of their family.

If you are going through an interstate child custody case and are considering a Scottsdale AZ family attorney, Attorney Hope Fruchtman at Fruchtman Law Firm is available for consultation. Don’t go through this complicated and emotionally stressful time alone, Fruchtman Law Firm is there to help with their experienced attorneys and staff.

Why Choose A Family Law Attorney From The Start?

Jun 23

In a family law case it may be tempting to attempt to work things out between parents without the use of attorneys. There is certainly precedent for such a parental agreement to exist; however, it is far more common that this method will lead to upheaval and an eventual court battle despite strong efforts.

The next thought that parents, especially parents who have traditionally been amicable in the past, may have is to go pro se in court, or represent themselves. This can be a critical error at a variety of junctures. While on the surface these two options may seem as though they would save valuable money and potentially even preserve the co-parenting relationship, quite the opposite is far more likely to happen.

Family court in any regard is an extremely multi-faceted experience. There are issues such as legal and physical custody, medical decisions, child support, holiday sharing, and many more which need to be assessed and agreed upon. To compound these issues, family court is a place where emotions notoriously run high. It is in the ironing out of these decisions that an attorney becomes essential to the successful outcome. Your attorney will be thinking rationally, assessing your priorities, and seeking to ensure a fair agreement for you and your loved ones.

Military divorce situations require additional considerations and exemptions that are different from civilian divorces. Attorney Hope Fruchtman is a Scottsdale family law attorney who is well-versed in the intricate details of military divorce. A member of the Arizona State Bar since 1995, she is eager to serve military families with compassion and extensive experience.

If you find yourself searching for a Scottsdale family law attorney who will offer fair representation with a strong legal presence, Fruchtman Law Firm can be the perfect fit for you and your situation. Fruchtman Law Firm has been in business since 1995 helping families get through the struggles associated with family law cases. Several of their associates are Scottsdale family law attorneys who are caring, capable, and constantly thinking of ways to better your family law situation. Contact our office today to schedule a consultation.

Why Do You Need a Lawyer for a Military Divorce?

Jun 08

Divorces involving a military family are often more complex than those involving civilians. There are unique issues that sometimes need to be addressed and having an attorney who has experience in handling them is preferable. To better understand why hiring an attorney at Fruchtman Law Firm is necessary, here are a couple of questions that need to be answered before filing for divorce:

Where Should You File for Divorce?

In a divorce between civilians, the logical place to file for the dissolution of the marriage is the state in which the couple lives. In a military divorce, there are special rules that dictate where the divorce can be filed and the legal state has a bearing on the financial aspects of the divorce.

For instance, the Uniformed Services Former Spouses’ Protection Act states that the state that the military member considers his or her legal residence has the right to divide the service member’s pension. If you are the civilian spouse, this can have an impact on how much of your spouse’s pension you can receive once the divorce is finalized. A family law attorney in Scottsdale AZ will be familiar with the state’s rules regarding military pensions and can provide advice on how to proceed.

How Is Child Support Decided?

The federal government defers to state law when it comes to determining child support, however, there are special considerations that must be made when divorcing a military service member. For instance, before a court order is issued, the civilian spouse can receive entitlements through the military to help provide financial support for the children. A family law attorney in Scottsdale AZ knows the steps to start the process of collecting those entitlements.

Once the child support order is issued, there is still the matter of receiving pay. An experienced attorney knows which office to submit the order for garnishment of the service member’s pay.

Contact Fruchtman Law Firm to learn more about how an attorney can help with a military divorce. There are other issues that can complicate the process and failing to have the right legal representation by your side could lead to delays or even an unfair divorce settlement.

Divorce Do’s and Don’ts

May 23

Divorce is a devastating life change that often involves more than the two immediate parties involved. While it is true that the estranged spouses go through turmoil as they determine how to rebuild without their former lovers, other family members in the circle also face challenges during the process of marriage dissolution. The changes of divorce become even more complicated when children are involved. Such is the reason why you should not attempt to navigate separation and impending dissolution without an attorney by your side. Attorney Hope Fruchtman of Fruchtman Law Firm can help you find your way through the system. scottsdale divorce lawyer

The Do’s and Don’ts of Divorce

When planning for marriage dissolution in Scottsdale, do:

  • Hire a skilled attorney who will fight for you in court
  • Work to keep a positive relationship with your former spouse
  • Focus on the bigger picture, which is your children (if involved) and ultimately moving forward from this experience

Along the same lines, you should refrain from doing the following when getting a divorce:

  • Reliving the past with your estranged spouse
  • Using the children (if a factor) as messengers
  • Adopt harmful habits such as alcohol and drug use in attempts to soothe the pain of dissolution

Why You Need A Scottsdale Divorce Lawyer

Arizona abides by a no-fault divorce standard, which means that you only need to prove that the union is broken beyond repair for the request to be granted by a judge. Things can become troublesome when it comes to dividing property, though. Arizona technically goes by the 50/50 rule, which means that assets must be divided equally among the two parties. Such equality is not always the case, however, as property is sometimes hidden to avoid community sales. You may not be able to track down every portion of your estranged spouse’s estate. An attorney, however, works to gain access to such information.

Many soon-to-be divorcees invest in counseling to help them overcome the pain of divorce. Consider hiring Attorney Hope Fruchtman and her team at Fruchtman Law Firm. With a trusted and experienced Scottsdale divorce lawyer on your side, you will be able to find a fair agreement and have the most successful case possible. Contact our office to schedule your initial consultation.

Legal Dependency Issues? Why You Need a Lawyer to Help

May 11

In a family law context, dependency issues refer to situations in which a child is considered unsafe with biological parents because the parent is abusing or neglecting the child or has an issue such as addiction that interferes with the ability to care for the child. While courts usually take the position that a child should be with biological parents when it is possible, exceptions are made when the child’s well-being is in danger.

A Scottsdale divorce attorney may have a background in dependency issues since this is an issue that may arise during child custody proceedings. Whether you are a parent who is facing an allegation of being unable to provide safe and adequate care for a child or a relative who hopes to remove a child from an unsafe situation, dependency issues should be addressed with the assistance of an attorney. It is important to seek legal custody in these types of cases so there is recourse if anyone tries to remove a child from the person who has that custody. Involving an attorney may also be important for creating documentation and a paper trail of abuse or neglect.

legal dependency issues

One parent might accuse another during a divorce of being unfit for custody because of domestic abuse. A Scottsdale divorce attorney may handle a case like this. Another situation might be one in which a child is removed from a parent’s home by Child Protective Services because of the parent’s drug addiction. The child might be placed with the other parent or with a family member pending further legal proceedings to assign custody. The Fruchtman Law Firm may be able to help a parent get supervised visitation and, eventually, more access to the child.

If a grandparent or another family member takes in a child who is unsafe in the parent’s home and does not get legal custody, the parent can take the child back at any time. Attorney Hope Fruchtman can advise family members who are in this situation about how to best protect the children in this situation and get legal custody if necessary. Contact our office today to speak to your trusted Scottsdale divorce attorney and determine the best option for your case.

Am I Eligible for Alimony?

Apr 25

Alimony is also known as spousal support or maintenance. This support is usually temporary. It is usually only awarded when the former spouse cannot make ends meet after the divorce. People may use spousal support to brush up on their education and get back into the job market. They may also use this money to raise their children. In some cases, alimony may be permanent if the spouse cannot support themselves due to a disability or age.

Factors That Affect Whether You Will Get Alimony Am I Eligible For Alimony?

Most states will take several things into consideration before they decide whether you can receive alimony. The court will decide whether you need spousal support. They will also have to decide whether your spouse is able to pay you.

What Information Will I Need to Give the Court

Financial

You will need to provide the court with a list of your expenses and income. Additionally, you will need to provide your spouse’s financial information to the court.

Age and Health

If you have a medical condition that makes it difficult for you to work, then you may be able to receive alimony. In most cases, alimony is only awarded for 1 to 10 years. However, you may be able to get it for a longer period of time if you have a chronic medical condition. If you or your spouse is near the retirement age, then this will also be taken into consideration.

Employment and Education

You and your spouse’s work history and education will determine whether you can receive alimony. If you have been underemployed or a stay-at-home spouse, then you may be awarded alimony.

Other factors that may be taken into consideration including bad behavior of the spouse and the length of the marriage.

Family Law Attorney in Scottsdale AZ

If you have questions about alimony, contact our office today to speak to our trusted and experienced family law attorney in Scottsdale AZ. Attorney Hope Fruchtman has years of experience with these cases; she is prepared to help you have a successful case and determine if alimony is right for you.

What If My Ex-Spouse Wants to Relocate Custody?

Apr 12

It is not uncommon after a divorce for a parent to break the news that he or she is moving to a new town, city, or state. For many, it comes as a shock, and anxieties begin to grow over the stability and longevity of a parent-child relationship. A parent may ask him or herself, “How can I have a quality relationship with my child if they are hundreds of miles away or in another state?” family law attorney in scottsdale

A parent may feel betrayal and as if their child is being stolen away from them.  He or she is left with more questions than answers. However, a parent may decide to move for a myriad of reasons, including employment opportunities, a new partner, or simply the wish to start a new life. Regardless of the reasons for moving, if parents cannot agree on matters of custody, the decision will go to a judge.

In Arizona, a judge will consider several factors in deciding the outcome of a custody dispute, which generally revolve around the well-being of the affected child:

  • The child’s preference to move or stay.
  • The motives of the parents, either in support or opposing the move, in addition to discerning whether a parent seeks to profit financially from a move.
  • The child’s quality of life if he or she were to move; including the emotional and developmental challenges of having a long-distance parent or sibling.
  • The child’s stability after relocation.
  • Whether the relocation will allow for parenting time with each parent.
  • Anything else that the court sees fit.

Contact A Scottsdale Family Law Attorney Today

A move-away case is often the most stressful, agonizing, and difficult experience that a parent may face. As a distant move can endanger the future relationship between a parent and his or her child, one should consult a professional, knowledgeable, and practiced attorney who knows the ins and outs of the law and who has experience protecting families. Attorney Hope Fruchtman has been serving families in her community as a Scottsdale family law attorney since 1995. Contact the Law Office of Hope E. Fruchtman today for more information on how to prevent an ex-spouse from relocating custody.

3 Steps in a Step-Parent Adoption

Mar 20

Step-parent adoption is the most common form of adoption in Arizona. In most cases, these adoptions happen after one parent remarries and brings children with them to form a larger, new family. As the family bond grows, many step-parents feel the drive to make the bond official by adopting their new stepchildren. Step-parent adoptions can be a very straightforward process, although they can become complicated if the other parent does not consent. Our experienced family law attorney in Scottsdale can help you determine the best next step to take for you and your case. Here are the steps involved in this type of adoption in Scottsdale, Arizona:

#1. Acquiring Consent to Adopt step parent adoption
Both biological parents of the child must consent to the child’s adoption by the step-parent. The parent who is not in the relationship must relinquish his or her parental rights before the process can go forward. This requires filling out a Consent to Adopt form.

This step may be the hardest part of the process. A parent who has an active relationship with their child will not give up their parental rights. There are cases in which the other parent is not involved with the child or will be willing to sign the consent form.

#2. Petition for Terminating Parental Rights
It may be possible to file a Petition for Terminating Parental Rights if the other parent does not consent to the adoption. This step is only appropriate when there is a serious problem that interferes with a healthy relationship between the parent and the child. Common examples include a chronic drug or alcohol problem, sexual or physical abuse of the child, psychological abuse, or child abandonment.

#3. Petition to Adopt
The final step is filing the Petition to Adopt paperwork. A family law attorney in Scottsdale may help your adoption move forward quickly if the step-parent and the biological parent have been married for more than one year and both biological parents grant consent.

It’s usually recommended that you work with a family law attorney as the adoption process can be complex and difficult to navigate. A family law attorney in Scottsdale can guide you through the process and help you avoid mistakes that can delay the adoption. Contact The Law Office of Hope E. Fruchtman today to discuss your case.

Legal Separation: What is the Process?

Mar 20

The parties of a marriage in Arizona might have a variety of legal reasons why they want to remain legally married but become legally separated. In the context of the procedures involved in a legal separation, they are much like those in a divorce, but the parties must agree to legal separation. In a divorce, no such agreement is required; one party to the marriage can petition for a divorce with or without the consent of the other party. Due process of law requires a Petition for Legal Separation, service of it on the respondent and a final decree. A trusted Scottsdale family law attorney can help you determine if this process is right for you and your family.

Property Division and Custody legal separation
Much like in a divorce, certain property division issues might be agreed upon; others might remain an issue, such as division of assets and debts, spousal support, child custody, support, and visitation. On those issues, the parties can come to agreements through their mutual attorneys, go to hearing in court, or agree to mediate remaining issues. When a judge enters a decree, the financial and community property interests of the parties are terminated and final. Issues of child custody, support, and visitation are subject to change if the moving party can show changed circumstances.

Remarriage
Legal separation does not operate to allow either of the parties to remarry. A formal divorce decree must be entered for that purpose.

Converting a Separation Petition into a Divorce
A pending separation case can be converted into a divorce case on a routine basis. If the parties are already legally separated, a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage must be filed, but it will bear the same case number as the separation case. The terms of the separation decree will be the terms of the divorce judgment.

If you or a loved one are struggling with your separation case and are in need of legal guidance, contact our experienced and effective Scottsdale family law attorney. Attorney Hope Fruchtman would be pleased to advise you on the finer points of legal separation as opposed to divorce. Contact the Law Office of Hope E. Fruchtman to arrange a case consultation today.