Canceling First Mediation Appointment
We are always here to reschedule your meeting and help you begin the process if and when you are ready. If you would like to schedule by phone, please call 480-999-7399 to speak with a Mediation Coordinator when you are ready to schedule.
Can you please explain the Petition and Acceptance of Service?
A Petition is a document filed with the court to start the divorce process. In most cases, a divorce or legal separation in mediation will utilize Arizona’s Summary Decree Process. This means once you reach all agreements and approve your Consent Decree you will sign a Summary Decree Petition, which will be filed with the court. This begins a required 60-day waiting period for your legal process. At the end of the 60-day waiting period, a Judge will sign these documents, enter them into the docket and your decree and process will be final. In the Summary Decree process there is no Acceptance of Service.
In some rare, specialized circumstances, parties in mediation will proceed with a traditional Petition and Acceptance of Service. The spouse who signs the Petition will be referred to as the Petitioner. The spouse who signs the Acceptance of Service will be referred to as the Respondent. Once the Consent Decree is approved, the Petitioner will sign a neutral Petition. The Respondent will sign Acceptance of Service. Signing and filing the Acceptance of Service begins the 60-day mandatory waiting period before the final Consent Decree can be filed and ends the community property marital relationship between spouses under Arizona law. It is also possible for spouses to agree upon a different date for financial separation.
What paperwork do I need to prepare for my first meeting?
After you schedule your first meeting, we will email you a Mediation Questionnaire that will guide you through collecting information for your meetings. You will complete the Questionnaire and securely send your supporting documentation through a link that we provide. Mediation Coordinators are on hand to support both of you with each and every step of your mediation process. If you have questions or need assistance, please call 480-999-7399.
How can I help ensure a smooth process?
Your mindset matters. Keep an open mind and have the best intentions. Maintaining a calm tone of voice and focusing on solutions will help you have a healthy process.
Also, it can be helpful to make a list of questions. As you think of questions, write them down and bring them to your first meeting.
Completing your Questionnaire as much as possible before your first meeting will help facilitate an efficient and effective process.
How do I pay my Flat Fee and Court Fees?
Before your first meeting, or at the time of your first meeting, you will speak with a Mediation Coordinator who will assist you in making payment for mediation services. You will have the option to pay your flat fee upfront or use our convenient payment plan options through Splitit.
What will we be discussing in our first meeting?
If you have minor children, your first meeting will likely focus on your Parenting Plan.
If you do not have minor children, your first meeting will likely focus on Assets and Debts.
NOTE: Your completed Questionnaire will contain all the information you need.
How will I communicate with the Aurit team?
Your Mediation Coordinators can help you anytime via email or phone at 480-999-7399.
The most effective and efficient way to reach your Mediator is to send them an email.
If you have any questions about your process, we are here to help.
Why do I need to fill out my own Questionnaire?
Your Questionnaire helps your mediator to better understand your needs. They also serve to meet the Arizona State requirement to disclose all assets, debts, and income fully.
It is okay if you do not have all of the information prepared for your first meeting. It is also okay if you collaborate to reduce duplication of information.
How do I fill out the “monthly expenses” section?
Your Questionnaire will change and evolve throughout your process. The ‘Monthly Expenses’ section of the Questionnaire serves to help each of you to develop an understanding of your future expenses and facilitate a comprehensive discussion of cost-sharing and support payments.
Please be as thoughtful, realistic, and reasonable as possible when listing monthly expenses. Gather information as needed to help you estimate expenses. You can refer to past bills, budgets, or credit card statements to see what you typically spend. If you have not previously paid an expense, such as rent, look into your area’s costs to complete your Questionnaire.
Mediation Coordinators are on here to help.
Is it necessary to send supporting documentation and statements?
Arizona law requires Full Financial Disclosure and your Questionnaire acts as a means to fulfill this requirement. Whether a divorce occurs in mediation or litigation, spouses must disclose all information related to their assets, debts, and income during the divorce process whether joint or separate property acquired before or during the marriage. You will be able to securely upload documents through the link provided in your confirmation email.
Do I need to send all statements prior to meetings?
Financial statements are an important part of the disclosure process. If you share accounts, and both have open and free access to them, it is still important to email statements if either of you requests them. Arizona law requires each of you disclose any and all financial information to which only one of you has access.
Thorough preparation, including sending documents, will help facilitate an effective and efficient process. We understand it is not always possible to complete the Questionnaire in its entirety. You will be able to complete it throughout your process.
Who are preferred legal advisors, and how do I choose?
Our Preferred Legal Advisors are Arizona attorneys who specialize in Divorce
and Family Law, who have agreed to work with our clients in the capacity of a “legal advisor”, rather than “attorney of record” or “formal attorney representation.” They will waive their upfront retainer fee – a rare opportunity reserved for Aurit Center clients. You only pay an hourly fee for work done reviewing your draft Consent Decree. You can meet with more than one of them and/or meet with an attorney who is not on our list. Whoever you choose to work with, be sure it is someone you trust.
Contact advisors directly to find out about their individual hourly rates.
DRAFTING AND REVISIONS
What happens if we reach agreements in mediation and my spouse changes their mind?
Once all agreements are reached, we will draft your Final Decree. It’s called a Consent Decree. We will draft these documents and email them to you for your review. At this point, you have an opportunity to have them reviewed by your own legal advisor. After you have reviewed your documents, if you or your spouse would like to change any of the agreements you reached in mediation, we would confirm these changes with both of you–to ensure they are still mutually agreeable.
If you need to discuss revisions before finalizing your documents, we can help you to schedule an additional meeting. We want to ensure you both feel comfortable moving forward with the finalization of your divorce documents. We are here to support you both as you revise your documents. When we focus together on editing your documents we can always reach full agreement.
Will you draft our legal documents?
Our professional mediators are Certified Legal Document Preparers.
When drafting your legal documents, they are acting in their capacity as a Certified Legal Document Preparer. They do not act as your attorney and cannot provide you with individual legal advice but will provide you with legal information. When you choose mediation, there is no requirement for an attorney-of-record. A professional Certified Legal Document Preparer will file your Petition and finalized Consent Decree with the court.
What if we are divorced but need help with resolving an issue?
We provide a simple, effective post-divorce modification process for clients we have previously worked with through divorce mediation. The issues often involve parenting time, decision making, or financial issues such as child support. We help you reach agreements and draft your modification documents. A professional Certified Legal Document Preparer will file your documents with the court to make them final.
How can I get a certified copy of the consent decree?
The court will send you a copy of your consent decree, but it will not be certified. In most instances, you will not need a Certified Copy.
If you file in Maricopa County, you can contact the Superior Court of Maricopa County to get a copy, either by mail or in person. They have multiple locations all over the Valley. Check with your Superior Court in regard to any applicable fees. For the location nearest, click here.
How is child support decided?
Arizona uses a specially designed Child Support Calculator. You may both agree to use it or to make your own agreement. Your Mediator will explain all the details and go through the calculator with you in mediation. For further information, you may find our A Comprehensive Guide to Child Support in Arizona helpful.
How can I learn more about changing my child support?
Please contact Family Support Services for questions related to paying or receiving child support. You will need to have your case number readily available. To speak with a representative, call Family Support Services at 602-372-5375, wait for the prompt and press #4, then wait for the prompt and press #1, then wait for the prompt and press #4, and you will be connected to a representative who can assist you.
The child support payor can make the first direct payment to Family Support Services here: The State of Arizona Payment Gateway.
Paying for Mediation
What are your fees?
We keep our pricing simple to support your financial stability. We offer personalized flat fees that cover your mediation services from start to finish. We never charge retainers or bill by the hour like many high-priced divorce attorneys. We believe in offering predictable fees and allow you to accurately plan and budget. This helps you maintain your financial stability.
How does the Flat Fee work?
- We get to know you. Our expert mediators talk with you and assess your needs during your free 1-hour consultation.
- We personalize your flat fee. At the end of your consultation, your mediator will provide you with an all-inclusive flat fee for our mediation services based on your needs and circumstances. Our fees are 90% less than the average total cost of divorce litigation. In fact, they are less than the average attorney retainer for only one spouse.
- It’s that simple. You’ll never receive surprise bills for unexpected fees. You pay one cost which you know upfront. We’ve designed our pricing with your financial stability in mind.
Do you have payment plan options available?
Yes. We have partnered with Splitit to offer 3-month, 6-month, or 12-month payment plans at 0% interest. You pay over time, and there is no application or credit check. Our flat approach combined with a payment plan option makes services affordable and helps to protect your financial stability.
You do not have to fill out an application. Splitit allows you to use your favorite credit card. We offer 3-month, 6-month or 12-month payment plans at 0% interest.
For further information regarding The Aurit Center’s payment plan options, please click here.
Do you charge a retainer?
No. We never charge retainers like many divorce attorneys. The truth is there is a misalignment between divorcing spouses and their attorneys. Attorneys benefit financially the more their clients fight because the more they fight, the longer the case takes, and the longer their case takes, the more money the attorney makes. The litigation system incentivizes conflict, while mediation works to keep conflict as low as possible.