Changes in AZ Child Custody Laws Effective January 1

An article in yesterday’s Arizona Republic highlights some of the changes that will take effect on January 1, 2013 regarding Arizona child custody laws. You can read the article at http://www.azcentral.com/news/politics/articles/20121220new-chidl-custody-law-january.html.  One of the changes includes using the term “legal decision-making” for legal custody. Additionally, physical custody will now be referred to as parenting time. Under the new laws, courts will be required to encourage joint parenting time to maximize parenting time with both parents, although decisions must still be made with the child’s best interests in mind. There is also a new statute regarding sanctions for litigation misconduct regarding legal decision-making or parenting time issues.  You can access the Arizona Revised Statutes online at http://www.azleg.gov/ArizonaRevisedStatutes.asp.

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