Limited Scope Representation Arizona

In Arizona, someone with a family law issue can hire an attorney to fully represent him/her in a case, or to perform a specific task. Full representation usually entails a significant upfront fee.  The attorney is then responsible for communicating with the other party or his/her attorney, determining what needs to be filed and completed in the case, completing all paperwork, reviewing all Court documents and appearing in any Court hearing, conference or trial.

When an attorney is hired to perform a specific task or specific tasks, this type of representation is called “limited scope representation.” Arizona Rule of Family Law Procedure 9(B). As long as the limitation is reasonable, it is allowable.  For example, a client can hire an attorney to: assist in settlement, draft certain documents, attend a particular hearing or mediation, or review information and give legal opinions.

There are benefits to limited scope representation. For one, the client can often afford this type of representation easier than full representation. Because the attorney is only performing discrete tasks, the costs are contained. Some clients prefer this type of representation because they want to perform some required litigation tasks themselves. Some litigants want an attorney to stay in the background (rather than fully represent them), so as to not antagonize the other party.

When parties want to settle without full representation, but would still like legal advice and assistance too, limited scope representation is a good choice (Mediation and Collaborative Divorce are also good choices, and are discussed in other blogs by this author on The limited scope attorney can advise the client as to good settlement options within the confines of the law and can point out potential pitfalls of settlement offers.  This attorney can also, for example, draft and/or review and edit settlement proposals and Court documents, including Decrees and Parenting Plans.

If you are interested in learning more about full or limited scope representation, mediation, or other options for addressing family law matters, please contact this author. Contact information is included below.

Alona M. Gottfried is a family law mediator and attorney in Arizona.  If you have questions about mediation, she can be reached at: 480-998-1500 or This is a general interest article only and is not intended to be legal advice. See a legal professional before making legal decisions. 

Simmons & Gottfried, PLLC
8160 E. Butherus Dr., Suite #7
Scottsdale, AZ 85260

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