What Must You Disclose In Family Law

Arizona Family Court is governed by the Arizona Revised Statutes, Title 25 and the Arizona Rules of Family Law Procedure. Rules 49-65 specifically address disclosure and discovery issues and rules. Rule 49 covers the mandatory minimum disclosures for all parties to a family law case. Here is a quick breakdown of what must be disclosed. In the event that your opposing party is refusing to comply, you do have options.

In discovery, you will have access to information that you may not have previously had. For instance, if you spouse owns a business you may want to have it valuated before you commit to your spouse taking the business in exchange for you keeping the house. You will likely need to discover how much of your retirement accounts are community property (earned during marriage) and how much might be separate (premarital) property. Leaving your petition rather vague gives you the opportunity to gather more information as you refine your position. By becoming educated on the law, you can better assess your position of what is fair or what you can live with during your divorce. It can also help you to negotiate what is really important to you.

For instance, let’s say you learn that you spouse spent $50,000 in secret gambling over the last three years. You may have a marital waste claim for $25,000. Instead, you may use that potential claim to settle other issues in the case that are very important to you.

 

Give us a call to discuss the motion to compel and mandatory attorneys fees you will be entitled to recover if the opposing party refuses to follow the rules:

In a nutshell, here is the quick version a more detailed description follows:

Rule 49 Disclosures

Visual Breakdown: Click Here for a Chart

  1. General
    1. Resolution Statement
    2. Duty to Disclose
    3. Additional Discovery
  2. Child Custody/Parenting Time
    1. Protective Orders
    2. Treatment Providers
    3. Criminal History of Household Members
    4. CPS History
    5. Child Support History
    6. Tax Information
    7. AFI
  3. Spousal Maintenance
    1. AFI
  4. Property
    1. Deeds/Titles – Documents that disclose ownership
    2. Bank/Account Statements
    3. Investment Statements
    4. Insurance Payout History
    5. Evidence of Property Value
    6. Business Records/Statements/Accounts
    7. List of Personal Property
  5. Debts
    1. Credit Card Statements (6 months)
    2. Balance Documents for all outstanding debts (Mortgages/Liens/Encumberances/Notes, ect…)
  6. Witnesses
    1. Lay Persons
    2. Experts

Rule 49 Disclosures

  1. Within forty (40) days after the filing of a Response to an initial Petition, you must disclose the following in writing to every other party:
    1. Resolution Statement
      1. Filed with the Clerked of the Court & Served Upon the Opposing Party
      2. Details:
        1. Agreements between the parties; AND
        2. Your Specific Positions to resolve all issues in the case
          1. Positions Statements should NOT include arguments to support your position.
  • Unless otherwise ordered by the court, a Resolution Statement is not required in proceedings involving:
    1. Third Party Rights
    2. Custody by a non-parent
  1. Disclosure of Witnesses
    1. Each party shall disclose the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of any witness whom the disclosing party expects to call at trial, along with a statement fairly describing the substance of each witness’s expected testimony. A party shall not be allowed to call witnesses who have not been disclosed at least sixty (60) days before trial, or such different period as may be ordered by the court.
  2. Disclosure of Expert Witnesses
    1. Each party shall disclose the name, address and telephone number of any person whom the disclosing party expects to call as an expert witness at trial, the subject matter on which the expert is expected to testify, the substance of the facts and opinions to which the expert is expected to testify, a summary of the grounds for each opinion, the qualifications of the witness, and the name and address of the custodian of copies of any reports prepared by the expert. A party shall not be allowed to call an expert witness who has not been disclosed at least sixty (60) days before trial or such different period as may be ordered by the court.
  3. Continuing Duty to Disclose
    1. The duty described in this rule shall be a continuing duty, and each party shall make additional or amended disclosures whenever new or different information is discovered or revealed. Such additional or amended disclosures shall be made not more than thirty (30) days after the information is revealed to or discovered by the disclosing party.
  4. Additional Discovery
    1. Nothing in the minimum requirements of this rule shall preclude relevant additional discovery on request by a party in a family law case, in which case further discovery may proceed as set forth in Rule 51.
  5. Child Custody or Parenting Time
    1. In a case in which child custody or parenting time is an issue, unless good cause is shown, the following documents and information shall be served on the other party with the Resolution Statement:

 

  1. 1. A copy of any past or current protective order and underlying petition involving a party or member of the party’s household.

 

  • 2. The name and address of each treatment provider and period of treatment involving any party for psychiatric or psychological issues, anger management, substance abuse or domestic violence, for the period beginning five years prior to the filing of the petition.

 

  1. 3. The date, description, location and documentation of any criminal charge against or conviction of any party or member of the party’s household occurring within ten years of the filing of the petition.

 

  1. 4. The date, description, location and documentation of any Child Protective Services investigation or proceeding involving any party or member of the party’s household occurring within ten years of the filing of the petition.

 

  1. C. Child Support. In a case in which child support is an issue, unless good cause is stated for not doing so, the following documents shall be served with the Resolution Statement:

 

  • 1. a fully completed affidavit substantially similar to Form 2, Affidavit of Financial Information;

 

  • 2. proof of income of the party from all sources, specifically including complete tax returns, W-2 forms, 1099 forms, and K-1 forms, for the past two (2) completed calendar years, and year-to-date income information for the current calendar year, including, but not limited to, year-to-date pay stub, salaries, wages, commissions, bonuses, dividends, severance pay, pensions, interest, trust income, annuities, capital gains, social security benefits, worker’s compensation benefits, unemployment insurance benefits, disability insurance benefits, recurring gifts, prizes, and spousal maintenance;

 

  1. 3. proof of court-ordered child support and spousal maintenance actually paid by the party in any case other than the one in which disclosure is being provided;

 

  1. 4. proof of all medical, dental, and vision insurance premiums paid by the party for any child listed or referenced in the petition;

 

  1. 5. proof of any child care expenses paid by the party for any child listed or referenced in the petition;

 

  • 6. proof of any expenses paid by the party for private or special schools or other particular education needs of a child listed or referenced in the petition; and

 

  • 7. proof of any expenses paid by the party for the special needs of a gifted or handicapped child listed or referenced in the petition.
  1. Spousal Maintenance and Attorney’s Fees and Costs
    1. If either party has requested an award of spousal maintenance or an award of attorneys’ fees and costs, the following documents shall be served with the Resolution Statement:

 

  1. 1. a fully completed affidavit substantially similar to Form 2, Affidavit of Financial Information; and

 

  • 2. those documents set forth in subdivision C(2).
  1. Property
    1. Unless the parties have entered into a written agreement disposing of all property issues in the case, or no property is at issue in the case, each party shall provide to the other the following documents in every action for dissolution of marriage or for legal separation:

 

  1. 1. copies of all deeds, deeds of trust, purchase agreements, escrow documents, settlement sheets, and all other documents that disclose the ownership, legal description, purchase price and encumbrances of all real property owned by any party;

 

  • 2. copies of all monthly or periodic bank, checking, savings, brokerage and security account statements and all electronically stored information concerning such accounts in which any party has or had an interest for the period commencing six (6) months prior to the filing of the petition and through the date of the disclosure;

 

  1. 3. Copies of all monthly or periodic statements and documents showing the value of all pension, retirement, stock option (reflecting grant date, vesting, exercise price and prior exercises), and annuity balances, including Individual Retirement Accounts, 401(k) accounts, and all other retirement and employee benefits and accounts in which any party has or had an interest for the period commencing six (6) months prior to the filing of the petition and through the date of the disclosure, and, if a claim for premarital accumulation is made as to a defined contribution plan, copies of all monthly or periodic statements and documents showing values, contributions, withdrawals, loans, earnings and losses from the date of marriage to the date of disclosure, or if no monthly or quarterly statements are available during these time periods, the most recent statements or documents that disclose the information.

 

  1. 4. copies of all monthly or periodic statements and documents showing the cash surrender value, face value, and premiums charged for all life insurance policies in which any party has an interest for the period commencing six (6) months prior to the filing of the petition and through the date of the disclosure, or if no monthly or quarterly statements are available for this time period, the most recent statements or documents that disclose the information;

 

  1. 5. copies of all documents and all electronically stored information that may assist in identifying or valuing any item of real or personal property in which any party has or had an interest for the period commencing six (6) months prior to the filing of the petition, including any documents that the party may rely upon in placing a value on any item of real or personal property;

 

  • 6. copies of all business tax returns, balance sheets, profit and loss statements, and all documents and all electronically stored information that may assist in identifying or valuing any business or business interest for the last two (2) completed calendar or fiscal years and through the latest available date prior to disclosure with respect to any business or entity in which any party has an interest or had an interest for the period commencing twenty-four (24) months prior to the filing of the petition; and

 

  • 7. a list of all items of personal property, including, but not limited to, household furniture, furnishings, antiques, artwork, vehicles, jewelry and similar items in which any party has an interest, together with the party’s estimate of current fair market value (not replacement value) for each item.
  1. Debts
    1. Unless the parties have entered into a written agreement disposing of all debt issues in the case, each party shall provide to the other the following documents in every action for dissolution of marriage or for legal separation:

 

  1. 1. copies of all monthly or periodic statements and documents and all electronically stored information showing the balances owing on all mortgages, notes, liens, and encumbrances outstanding against all real property and personal property in which the party has or had an interest for the period commencing six (6) months prior to the filing of the petition and through the date of the disclosure, or if no monthly or quarterly statements or electronically stored information are available during this time period, the most recent statements or documents or electronically stored information that disclose the information; and

 

  • 2. copies of credit card statements and debt statements for all months for the period commencing six (6) months prior to the filing of the petition and through the date of the disclosure.