How To Suggest Family Mediation to Resolve Conflict

A falling out with children, parents, siblings or other family members can be the most difficult to bear. Family members have the ability to hurt us more than anyone else, but failing to address the conflict and move forward can result in life-long regret. We have all heard the stories of people who wish for one more day, hour or word with a relative who dies before peace is achieved. It is often one’s ego that prevents him/her from making that call, or otherwise reaching out to repair the … [Read more...]

Division of Debt in an Arizona Divorce

As a general rule, spouses are responsible for each other’s debts.  A.R.S. § 25-214(C).  The law presumes that debts incurred during a marriage are community debts, absent clear and convincing evidence to the contrary.  See Hofmann Co. v. Meisner, 17 Ariz. 263, 267, 497 P.2d 83, 86 (1972).  A debt is considered community if it was intended to benefit the community (even if the primary intent was not to benefit the community).  Cardinal & Stachel, P.C. v. Curtiss, 225 Ariz. 381,384, 238 P.3d … [Read more...]


DATE:        Thursday, April 12, 2012 TIME:          8:00 a.m. – 8:30 a.m. – Registration and Breakfast                     8:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m. – Program                     9:30 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. - Networking PLACE:      State Bar of Arizona - Boardroom                     4201 N. 24th Street, Ste. 100, Phoenix COST:        $25 (Breakfast Included) “HAPPY CLIENTS - HAPPY ATTORNEYS: HOW TO BEST SERVE FAMILY LAW PARTIES USING ADR” This CLE is a “must-see” for … [Read more...]

Why Going To Court Is Risky Compared To Arizona Family Law Mediation

There are many good reasons to mediate your family law dispute.  For example, it is generally significantly less expensive, stressful and time consuming than litigation.  However, a big reason to avoid court and mediate the matter is that Court is risky.  There is not an attorney out there than can guarantee you a result.  That is because family court judges have a lot of discretion in entering rulings. The Judge makes its decisions based primarily on what he/she sees and hears in Court.  If … [Read more...]

When is Collaborative Law the Best Option for my Arizona Divorce?

A. What is Collaborative Divorce Law? Collaborative law is a method of resolving disputes without litigation. The parties agree to stop, delay or avoid litigation and hire professionals trained in collaborative law to negotiate settlement. The parties may just hire their own collaboratively trained divorce attorneys or other professionals as well. Financial experts and child specialists (where children are at issue) are jointly retained. The parties agree not to go to Court, agree to … [Read more...]

Tips For Successful Negotiations From The Prospective Of A Mediator – Part 2

In Part 1 of this blog, I discussed some of the “bad” negotiation tactics that derail settlement, as well as provided five tips for successful negotiations.  Below are seven additional tips for negotiations. 6.    Understand your options.  Have a Plan B ready – what you can do if settlement fails.  That way, you can determine whether what is being offered in the negotiation / mediation is better or worse than that.  You do not want to walk away from potential settlement and then realize that … [Read more...]

A Recent Review From A Satisfied Divorce Mediation Participant

If you are unsure if mediation is right for you, it is often helpful to hear what someone who has been through the process has to say about it.  Below is a review from one of my recent mediation participants, “Richard G.,” who used mediation to quickly, inexpensively and amicably resolve a divorce involving minor children: “The process of mediation was a positive experience that allowed us to agree in writing to all the terms of our divorce including a parenting plan in a non-confrontational … [Read more...]

Common Mistakes To Avoid When Getting A Divorce in Arizona – Part 2

I have practiced in the area of family law in Arizona for over 15 years. I have litigated divorce cases, mediated divorce cases and worked with a team in a collaborative divorce. This is Part 2 of this article, in which I discuss the five most common mistakes I have seen people make during the divorce process (and other family law matters). Click here to see Part 1. 3. Failing To Realize That, In Litigation, Your Spouse Will Make Sure Anything You Say Or Do Will Be Held Against You. … [Read more...]

How Do Assets Get Divided In An Arizona Divorce?

In an Arizona divorce, the parties’ community property must be divided equitably. The Arizona Divorce Laws are as follows; What is community property? Community property includes any property obtained during the marriage.  The exception is property one party obtains through gift on inheritance. What does equitably mean? The law says community property should be “equitably” divided.  That means that the division should be near equal.  In other words, instead of dividing a couch in half, one … [Read more...]

How to Prepare for Mediation in Phoenix Arizona

In my last blog entry, I gave four ideas for preparing yourself for a successful mediation.  Below are four other ideas: 1.     Think creatively. Mediation allows you to consider options that the Court would never address.  For example, you can contract for the payment of a common child’s college education in a mediated agreement.  You cannot do that at trial.  Thinking “outside of the box” may result in a much more satisfying resolution of your conflict. 2.     Be ready to … [Read more...]

Simmons & Gottfried, PLLC
8160 E Butherus Dr, Suite #7 Scottsdale, AZ 85260
Phone: (480) 998-1500