If a child has or may suffer an “irreparable injury, loss or damage” you may meet the legal standard to file for Emergency Orders. Emergency requests are just that—emergencies. These are real and present dangers to a minor child. Examples of emergencies that may qualify include child abuse, child neglect, physical injury to a child, molestation, threats, or fear of a parent fleeing the state or country. These are “irreparable,” meaning impossible to be fixed or repaired.
It is important to meet with an attorney as soon as you believe irreparable injury or loss may occur or has occurred. Too much time between the action (abuse, neglect, etc) could demonstrate to the Court that it is not a true emergency. As soon as you discover the injury or loss, it is paramount to consider all legal options to prevent further abuse toward the child.
Financial issues (spousal maintenance, child support) are not generally appropriate grounds for Emergency Temporary Orders. Those issues are typically reserved for the standard Temporary Orders. The focus of Emergency Temporary Orders revolves around the physical safety and security of children.
The day you file for Emergency Temporary Orders, they can be granted or denied. This means that you will get an immediate as to the Court’s position about the severity of the issues that you raised in your Motion.
To file for Emergency Temporary Orders, you will need an underlying case. This means that you cannot seek Emergency Temporary Orders unless or until you have filed for divorce or establishment of your custody rights. If you have not previously filed anything in Court, then you will file your Petition to Establish/Divorce at the same time you file Emergency Temporary Orders. We have heard from clients that it is overwhelming to file all these documents by themselves, which is why they will reach out to Best Law Firm to help them with this process.
The Emergency Temporary Orders are in effect once they are granted and the Order has been served on the other party. The Court will also set a hearing within ten (10) days to hear evidence on whether these Orders should remain in effect. If you are the party who sought the Emergency Orders, it is important to start collecting all the evidence you have to support your abuse and neglect claims. The judge will want to hear that evidence at your next hearing.
If you are the party that the allegations are made upon, it is crucial for you to consult with an attorney as soon as you can to learn your rights. If you attend an Emergency hearing pro per, you may not be fully prepared to defend against the allegations. Best Law Firm can help you.
If you do not qualify for Emergency Orders, you may be able to file for standard Temporary Orders, which could also provide you with the relief you desire.
SB1127 was enacted in 2013 and it changed some aspects of Arizona family law. One of the biggest changes was abolishing the term “custody” in family law because of the common misconceptions and confusion surrounding the term. The important thing to remember about this new law is that only the terms have changed; the two basic questions (listed above) regarding children and family law have remained the same.
“Legal decision-making” means the legal right and responsibility to make all non-emergency legal decisions for a child including those regarding education, health care, religious training and personal care decisions. For the purposes of interpreting or applying any international treaty, federal law, a uniform code or the statutes of other jurisdictions of the United States, legal decision-making means legal custody.
A.R.S. § 25-401
“Parenting time” means the schedule of time during which each parent has access to a child at specified times. Each parent during their scheduled parenting time is responsible for providing the child with food, clothing and shelter and may make routine decisions concerning the child’s care.
A.R.S. § 25-408(a)
Rights of a noncustodial parent: “…both parents are entitled to custody or parenting time and both parents reside in the state, at least forty five days advance written notice shall be provided to the other parent before a parent may (1) relocate the child outside the state (2) relocate the child more than one hundred miles within the state.
Custody is essential everything included with raising a child. It includes: Physical Custody – “Parenting Time” authority Legal Custody – “Legal Decision-Making”
The Best Interests of a Child is a standard by which a court determines what arrangements would be to a child’s greatest benefit, often used in deciding decision-making and parenting time matters and in deciding whether to approve an adoption or a guardianship.
Parenting time means the schedule of time during which each parent has access to a child at specified times. Each parent during their scheduled parenting time is responsible for providing the child with food, clothing and shelter and may make routine decisions concerning the child’s care.
Visitation means a schedule of time that occurs with a child by someone other than a legal parent.
Legal decision-making means the legal right and responsibility to make all non-emergency legal decisions for a child including those regarding education, health care, religious training and personal care decisions. Legal decision-making means legal custody.
Sole legal decision-making means one parent has the legal right and responsibility to make major decisions for a child.
Both parents have the legal right and share the responsibility to make all non-emergency legal decisions for a child including education, health care, religion and personal care.
Legal parent means a biological or adoptive parent whose parental rights have not been terminated. Legal parent does not include a person whose paternity has not been established pursuant to section 25-812 or 25-814.
Once you file the Emergency Orders, they will be granted or denied the same day. Sometimes the Court’s calendar will dictate when the judge can read them, review the facts, and decide. Once the decision is made, you will be immediately notified.
No, you are not required to have the evidence to support your Emergency Orders request when you file the Petition; however, it will help the judge make a more informed decision if you are able to provide evidence to support your allegations. Your evidence will be necessary if the Court sets a hearing on your Emergency Orders request.
If they are granted, you need to coordinate service of the Order and the underlying pleadings on the other party. Service is the official way the other party obtains the documents. In emergency circumstances, we often request the help of law enforcement, or we hire a private process server to assist with service. The orders are not in effect on the other party until they are served.
If you are served with the Emergency Orders, you must comply with those Orders. It is also time to consult with an attorney and collect any evidence you may have to demonstrate why the Emergency Orders should not remain in effect after the next hearing. A hearing will be set within 10 days of the other party obtaining the Emergency Orders, so time is of the essence to start preparing your defense.
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