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AZ FAMILY LAW LAWYER LEGAL TEAM IS HERE TO HELP RESIDENTS OF ARIZONA THROUGH DIFFICULT TIMES AND LEGAL CRISIS DURING THE CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC
Our law firm is currently open and offering social-distancing, no-contact phone and video consultation and legal representation
FAQ About Family Law In Phoenix
What if my child’s other parent is keeping the child in violation of a court order?
ANSWER: The courts have asked that families don’t call emergency services over parenting disputes unless it is an emergency and you or your child’s safety is at risk. This is to leave first responders available for COVID-19 support. Avoiding involving police also alleviates stress on the child. You should contact your attorney to file a motion for a telephonic hearing to get your children back. You can ask the judge to order make up parenting time.
How do you do a supervised visitation order with Coronavirus?
Supervised visitation can continue under the originally ordered agency if they are still available. If their typical supervision isn’t available, the parents should agree upon an alternative agency or family member to supervise the visitation. You should find other accommodations if you typically have visitations at public places such as parks. If parenting time or exchanges previously occurred at similar places, the parents should agree on an alternative meeting place. The parents can meet at a fire or police station if they are unable to agree upon a neutral meeting place.
I am living in an area subject to a shelter in place/stay at home order or a curfew. How does this affect visitation?
Arizona’s stay-at-home order, Executive Order 2020-18 allows travel for the purpose of “[e]ngaging in activities essential for the health and safety of family, household members and pets . . .” As parenting time orders are constructed to best serve the child’s well-being, traveling for visitation is not a violation of the Executive Order. The Executive Order also provides that no one will be required to provide documentation to prove they are engaged in essential activities, so you won’t need to bring along your custody order when driving for visitation purposes.
Spring Break was extended for my child’s school district. How does this affect visitation?
While Arizona’s schools did originally address the spread of coronavirus by “extending” spring break, they are no longer under an extension status. Schools are closed for the remainder of the school year. You should abide by the dates that spring break would’ve been if you are the parent who has custody for spring break. Keep in mind that you should limit travel if you were planning a vacation for spring break this year.
What if I am sick and have a hearing?
For the time being, almost all hearings are being held telephonically. If you do have an emergency hearing in person, you should call your attorney and court administrator to inform them that you are ill and unable to attend your hearing.
I heard family court is closed- so if I don’t follow the court order, the other parent can’t do anything about it. Is that true?
While the court always encourages families to resolve issues on their own before seeking court intervention, the court can still hold emergency hearings. Many hearings are being held telephonically and online. Even if the other parent isn’t able to get you into court before the pandemic is over, your family law judge will likely find a way to punish you for taking advantage of a desperate situation to violate a court order.
My spouse and I have had our income reduced due to coronavirus, and I can’t afford to pay my child support. What should I do?
Family courts are encouraging parents across the nation to do their best to openly communicate both changes in income and precautions being taken to fight the spread of COVID-19. You may be able to file a motion to change parenting time to reduce the amount of child support you owe, but the court is unlikely to hold such a hearing, telephonically, unless it is for an emergency. For the most part, the only thing you can do is sit and wait for the pandemic to end to see how the family court judges handle these issues.