Arizona Divorce Guide

Mediation

Prior to the filing of an action for Mediate a marriageannulment, dissolution or legal separation, either or both spouses may file a petition invoking the conciliation provisions of Arizona divorce laws for the purposes of preserving the marriage, or for an amicable settlement of the controversy between the spouses in order to avoid unnecessary litigation. Mediation can save you time, money and aggravation.

If the court believes it may be useful it can suggest marriage counseling. Courts can order mediation if it determines that mediation may result in a more satisfactory settlement between the parties. Less disagreement nearly always means less legal expense. If there is a protective order (restraining order) in place, they court may not order mediation unless the object of the protection agrees. Marriage counseling may be recommended if it appears it will provide some sort of benefit.

You must complete an educational course

In an action for dissolution of marriage, the court will require that the parties complete an educational program as provided for by the superior court in each county under statute 25-352. Should a party not complete, or refuse to complete the educational program, the court may find that person in contempt of court or impose any reasonable sanction.

The educational program will include instruction related to all of the following:
  • The emotional, psychological, financial, physical and other short-term and long-term effects of divorce on adults and children
  • Options available as alternatives to divorce
  • Resources available to improve or strengthen marriage
  • The legal process of divorce and options available for mediation
  • Resources available after divorce

[Based on Arizona Revised Statutes 25-316 and 25-381.09]

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