Common & Important Divorce Terms Defined (Pt. 1)

When you have made the decision to file for a divorce, the upcoming process – as well as the legal terms associated with it – can be unclear if you’ve never gone through divorce before.

In this three-part blog series, we will define some of the most common and important divorce terms that you will likely hear as you prepare for the process. If, however, you are ready to get some specific professional advice regarding your situation and divorce case, don’t hesitate to contact experienced Scottsdale Divorce Attorney Karen Schoenau. She has the experience, knowledge, skills and resources necessary to help you resolve your divorce case as favorably as possible.

Definitions of Common Divorce Terms
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If you are preparing for divorce, here are some common and important divorce terms to understand. Contact us for the best representation in your upcoming divorce.

Here are some common divorce terms and their definitions (in alphabetical order):

  • Adversarial divorce – Also referred to as contested divorce, this refers to cases in which the divorcing parties are unable to agree on some (or all) of the major issues in their divorce case. With adversarial divorce, the case typically has to be resolved in court, with a family court judge making the final decisions in the divorce case.
  • Affidavit – A written, factual statement that is provided under oath and that has been notarized (or otherwise officially authorized). Affidavits can come into play in various ways in a divorce case, particularly when issues regarding the division of marital property or custody arise.
  • Alimony – Also referred to as spousal support or spousal maintenance, alimony refers to the payments that one spouse renders to another during and/or after a legal separation or divorce. While divorcing parties may be able to agree on alimony payments, when they can’t, it will be up to the court to rule on the matter.
  • Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) – A process of resolving legal disputes (including divorce and other family law disputes) in a manner that is less adversarial than trial or courtroom proceedings. Arbitration and mediation are the primary forms of ADR, and they can facilitate the divorce process significantly when divorcing partners are able to work together or communicate as they dissolve their marriage.

For some more definitions to important divorce terms, be sure to check out the upcoming second and third installments of this blog series.

Scottsdale Divorce Attorney at the Law Office of Karen A. Schoenau

Are you ready to proceed with divorce? If so, you can turn to Scottsdale Divorce Attorney Karen Schoenau for effective representation and the best possible outcomes to your case. Since 1987, Karen Schoenau has been committed to helping people resolve their important family law matters, including complex cases related to divorce, custody, paternity and other issues.

To receive professional advice and learn more about how we can help you, schedule an initial consultation with Attorney Karen Schoenau. You can set up this meeting by calling 480-209-1918 or by emailing us using the contact form at the top of this page.

From her offices based on Scottsdale, Attorney Karen Schoenau represents clients throughout the metropolitan Scottsdale area, including in Scottsdale, Mesa, Surprise, Maricopa County, Pinal County, Gila County and throughout the state of Arizona.

Client Reviews
Karen is highly respected in the legal community. She is effective and thorough. Karen just keeps going regardless of the odds.
Karen was extremely helpful setting up my petition for conciliation. She is by far the most knowledgeable attorney regarding the necessary paperwork, how to file the petition and where it has to be submitted. She listened intently when I was describing my situation and intentions. She was very responsive to my questions and request. She is trustworthy and diligent . I would recommend her to anyone having marital issues. Mark
Very high customer/client considerate. We found Karen when we were forced to leave another Phoenix lawyer due to his bad advice and lack of interest to help us. We were in Phoenix for six days from Michigan with nothing happening but a high wasted expense. Karen and her firm took us in and solved our issue with the courts etc. in two and a half days. Karen’s professionalism with us was very cost effective/productive. If we would have found her first, we would have saved thousands of dollars. Her interest for us was very high. She returned every call. She knew every answer to our questions. She did this for us with a death in her family. She left for a funeral and made sure we were treated with the same professionalism from her firm to finish up. I recommend Karen and her firm with very high satisfaction. Our case is custody with one parent in prison. We will return to Phoenix someday with interests for the child and his parent, if needed. Karen will be our top choice. Nolan
Karen and Bonita are wonderful!! I know that the word "wonderful" is used a lot, but the team they make and the work they did for me can only be described as WONDERFUL!! Yes there where ups and downs in my case, but that is the system and Karen along with Bonita guided and taught me as "WE" went through it together. Karen’s easy going manner and her knowledge really helped me with the emotional part of my divorce. I used the team of Karen and Bonita both times I needed to go to court with my ex and had results that were best for my little girl. Some times I did not get what I wanted, but it was what my daughter needed. Looking back at my case, I made the right choice and would do it again in a heart beat!! Jim
Karen was extremely supportive during a very trying time in our lives. She helped me to put things in perspective and think positive when I was overwhelmed. She is very knowledgeable about the laws pertaining to grandparents rights and the rights of the parents and knew how to provide the appropriate laws pertaining to the situation we were in. I am so grateful for her expertise and guidance. She proved to be very aggressive when she needed to be but was also supportive to my and my children. I would recommend her to anyone in a similar situation. Deanna