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Legal Decision-Making and Parenting Time

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Post-Divorce Treatment of Non-Custodial Dads


Q: Are divorced, non-custodial fathers treated differently by their children’s schools?

Whether you are getting divorced in Phoenix or elsewhere, if you have minor children, there are many issues to work out during the divorce process. 

Parents should not lose sight of how difficult splitting one household into two can be for young children, not just in the short-term after the divorce, but long-term as well.
Read more . . .


Thursday, May 24, 2018

Child Custody and the Potential Impact of Free Range Parenting

Q: Will free range parenting impact child custody and parental rights?

If you are getting divorced in Phoenix, Arizona, you’ll have to divide your marital assets and determine whether one spouse or the other will be entitled to alimony or spousal support.

But if you have minor children, you will also have to work out – – or have a judge determine – – items such as child support,


Read more . . .


Friday, August 18, 2017

When a Child Dies While in the Care of the Other Parent’s New Partner


Q: What can I do if I feel my child isn’t safe around my ex’s new partner?

Many things about getting a divorce aren't easy, especially when there are children involved. Transitioning from living under one roof to two roofs is usually hard on the children.
Read more . . .


Sunday, July 23, 2017

Arizona Parental Rights Case May Impact Same Sex and Heterosexual Divorces


Q: Does the non-biological parent of a child through artificial insemination have parental rights in a same sex marriage and divorce in Arizona?

Establishing paternity in Arizona, once a rather straightforward business, is in the news.


Read more . . .


Friday, June 9, 2017

When Mommy Threatens the Children


Q: What happens if a parent threatens the safety of their child?

Every night across America parents tell their children to go to sleep. Some might add an acceptable reason like they have to get up early or have a big day tomorrow. Others might use an exasperated tone if the kids are too slow to comply. But when a Scottsdale single mom reportedly told her two girls to "go to sleep so that she could kill them both and so the three of them could be in heaven together without their father", that was a big red flag that Read more . . .


Sunday, August 23, 2015

Divorced Mom Charged With Child Abduction 25 Years After Divorce

While a divorce is pending, what are the limitations on out-of-state or international travel with minor children?

Unfortunately for many litigants, the divorce process in Arizona can take several months – often longer than a year – to conclude. During this time there is a Preliminary Injunction in effect which prohibits removing a minor child of the parties form the state.  Additionally either party may seek pendente lite relief in order to set more specific  parameters regarding decision making and parenting time prior to the final divorce order.  If the parties maintain an interstate or international residence, the court may make reasonable accommodations for travel. Leaving the state with a minor child during a pending divorce and/or custody proceeding, however, can result in dire consequences, particularly for the parent alleged to have absconded with the child.

Recently Arizona law enforcement officials recently charged a retired mother with child abduction nearly 25 years after she fled Arizona during a pending divorce. According to the allegations, the mother and her ex-spouse – the child’s father – were in the process of divorcing and the father had been granted legal custody and visitation rights with their 3-year-old child. Inexplicably, the mother disappeared from the state of Arizona and was not heard from during all of the intervening years.

According to authorities, the mother had changed her name, altered her social security number, and changed the child’s identity to make it all but impossible to locate the pair. During the past two and a half decades, the mother was employed at Arizona State University as a professor of environmental planning and design, while the child successfully finished grade school, high school and college – with no one the wiser.

Once the mother was finally discovered, she was arrested and held on a $250,000 bond. If convicted, she could face up to three years behind bars. She could also face liability should the father file a civil lawsuit to compensate for the 25 years he was wrongfully denied a meaningful relationship with his child.

If you are considering a divorce, or would like to discuss the best ways to keep the dissolution of your marriage as drama-free as possible, please contact an experienced and concerned family law attorney at Cohen Family Law. Serving Phoenix, Arizona and surrounding areas, we can be easily contacted at 602-714-8898.


Monday, July 6, 2015

Arizona Supreme Court Considering Changes to ‘Parenting Coordinator’ Role


What is a ‘parenting coordinator’ and how will this individual be involved in my custody dispute?

Amid widespread complaints from Arizona parents, the state Supreme Court will review proposed changes to the ‘parenting coordinator’ role in contested custody cases. Under current laws, a judge overseeing a custody case can mandate the appointment of a parenting coordinator – thereby requiring parents to submit to the inclusion of this often-resisted third-party in a confidential custody dispute. 

According to several court websites, the role of a parenting coordinator – who can be a mental health professional or family law attorney – is to help the family mediate and work through co-parenting issues as they navigate the unfamiliar territory of parenting post-divorce or post-break-up.


Read more . . .


Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Tips for Parents as Summertime Looms


This is my first summer splitting custody of my school-age child with my ex. What is the best way to handle this situation?

If you are learning to co-parent after a divorce or separation, the first year or so can introduce new and unexpected changes in family dynamics. For the school-age child, the freedom offered by the summer months may also mean a change or adjustment to the visitation schedule. Oftentimes, these issues are addressed in a custody and visitation order incorporated into the final divorce decree. However, if you are operating without a visitation order, or are considering seeking a modification now that your child is a little older, the following tips may help you navigate the upcoming summer months.
Read more . . .


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