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Child Custody

Divorce Lawyer in Payson and Yuma, AZ Resolves Child Custody Disputes

Upholding your parental rights and your child’s best interests

When it comes to child custody cases, the courts have one goal: to do what is best for your child. It is important to understand they want both parents involved in their child’s life unless extreme circumstances forbid it. Still, you have the right to protect your interests and to show the court that the outcome you are requesting is in your child’s best interest. At the Law Offices of Phil Hineman, P.C., we are here to help you get the results you desire.

Understanding child custody in Yuma and Payson

Arizona reformed its child custody laws in 2012 to encourage joint parenting and make the process more fair and efficient. Family law courts are no longer permitted to favor one parent over another simply on the basis of gender, and they must, whenever possible, seek to maximize the amount of time each parent spends with the child. There are now mandatory fines for presenting false information to the court, so parents need to be more cooperative with the judge and with each other.

Legal decision-making authority in Arizona

Child custody used to be divided between physical custody, which was possession of the child and the duty to provide food, shelter and other essentials, and legal custody, the right to decide matters related to the child’s health and welfare. Legal custody is now called legal decision-making authority. It refers to major issues, such as the child’s medical treatment, schooling, and religious formation, as well as less fundamental questions of whether a child should play sports, learn an instrument, or get a haircut. The current law favors shared decision-making, but the mechanism for resolving serious disagreements can be different for different families. As your advocate, we strive for solutions that uphold your prerogatives as a parent.

Creating a manageable parenting plan

Physical custody is now called parenting time, and it includes time when the child resides with the parent and, in the case of noncustodial parents, sessions that used to be called visitation. Arizona law favors joint parenting, but divorce courts have to be flexible, since not every parent is in a position to be a primary caretaker, even part time. We work closely with you to negotiate a parenting plan that maximizes your time with your child so you can maintain a healthy, loving relationship.

Good results in tough custody disputes

We have more than 25 years of experience getting favorable results for parents in Yuma, Payson and the Phoenix metro area.  In addition to handling child custody disputes, we can also address post-divorce modifications and the enforcement of custody arrangements.

Contact an accomplished Yuma divorce attorney to schedule a consultation

Whether you’re facing a tough custody battle or simply need assistance finalizing a parenting plan, the Law Offices of Phil Hineman, P.C. is ready to help. We understand you want to do what is best for your child, and we can help you construct a unique parenting plan that addresses your specific needs. Call 928-257-1155 or contact us online to discuss your options with an experienced divorce lawyer.


  • Affordable, personal representation
  • Free consultation by phone (Criminal / Bankruptcy cases)
  • Evening/weekend appointments
  • 20+ years of experience
  • Offices in Yuma, Payson, Mesa, and Peoria

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