For most Arizona residents, the divorce process is something of a mystery. This is not a process that people go through on a regular basis, and, even when a person has already experienced divorce in the past, laws and procedures change over time, and the current divorce climate may be far different from what an individual last experienced.. One of the aspects of divorce that is often misunderstood is the discovery process.
Discovery is the part of divorce in which attorneys for both spouses gather the information that will be required to move the divorce forward. This is different for each couple, as some divorce cases are far more complicated than others. In a "basic" divorce, discovery will involve the use of interrogatories, which are sets of written questions and answers that both spouses are expected to complete. These questions might include requests for bank account statements, debt summaries, mortgage information and an estimate of the current value of any significant assets.
Some couples will have more complex discovery needs. This can include a psychological or parenting evaluation, a business valuation, or information on complex investments. In some cases, an interrogatory will be used to gather information about shared children and their current and projected needs.
No matter how simple or complex the discovery portion of a divorce might be, it is absolutely imperative to take the time needed to gather and share all necessary information. Trying to rush through discovery opens the door to errors and omissions, both accidental and intentional. The outcome of any Arizona divorce will affect both spouses for many years to come, making it important to get things right at the initial stage of the process.
Source: The Huffington Post, "Are You Prepared for Your Day in (Divorce) Court?", Bari Zell Weinberger, Feb. 29, 2016