What are post-decree petitions?
"Post-decree" petitions are those filed after a Decree of Dissolution of Marriage, Legal Separation or
Annulment, or Judgment of Paternity is entered, and are usually filed to modify or enforce existing orders of
the Court How do I start a post-decree action?You must file the appropriate paperwork with the court if you want the court to
change or enforce a current court order. Consult with an attorney for legal advice. Forms are located at:
I need to modify Legal Decision Making or parenting time. What do I do?Your divorce decree or paternity judgment may require you to participate in
mediation before you can ask for a modification of Legal Decision Making or parenting time. Check your paperwork.
You can participate in mediation at the court or through a private provider. See information about court
mediation at Conciliation Services.
If you need to go to court you must file paperwork to modify Legal Decision Making and parenting time. See
information and forms.
Can I change the amount of child support that I am paying/receiving?
Yes, if the amount you pay will increase or decrease by 15%. You can also ask for a modification of child
support every 3 years, regardless of the amount of increase or decrease. See information and forms to
modify child support. My child is over 18 and I am still paying child support. How can I have it stopped?Unless a child is disabled, the obligation to pay child support stops once a child turns
18 and is out of high school. If the child is still in high school after the age of 18, the child support stops when the
child turns 19. If no other current support payments are owed for support of younger children, for spousal maintenance
(alimony), or for arrears (back support or back alimony), the child support order stops by itself by operation of law or
according to the terms of the child support order. However, there is usually an "Order of Assignment" that orders your
employer to deduct the support payments from your pay and to send the money directly to the state. Check the court file
or with your employer's payroll office to determine whether there is a "stop-date" on the current Order of Assignment and
whether that date is correct. If there is a stop date and the date is correct, you do not need to do anything. If either
piece of information is missing or incorrect, you will need to ask the Court to issue an "Order Stopping Order of
If the other parent is willing to provide his or her notarized signature along with yours on an "Agreement to Stop Order of
Assignment", there is no filing fee for filing to stop the order by agreement. If one of the parties never filed a response
to the original decree ordering child support, then a response fee must be paid by the party who did not file a response.
If you do not want to ask the other parent to provide their notarized signature on an agreement or the other parent is unwilling
to provide the signature, you may file a Petition to stop the Order of Assignment. There will be a filing fee for this
petition which may include the response fee if not previously paid as mentioned above.
How can I enforce a Court Order about Legal Decision Making or Parenting Time Issues?You can seek advice from a lawyer.
You can ask a Document Preparer to assist you in completing documents.
You can get the required forms at the Superior Court Self-Service Center at a nominal fee. See information
How can I enforce a Court Order about Child Support or Child Support Arrears?There are several options for you. You can file an Expedited Request to Enforce with
Family Court Conference Center.
You can get the required forms at the Superior Court Self-Service Center at a nominal fee. The information and
forms can be downloaded at no cost from the Superior Court Self-Service Center web site.What is Paternity?Paternity is the term used to describe a court matter when children are born of
parents who are not married to each other.
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How do I establish paternity?There are several ways to establish paternity. To establish paternity a judge or
other official may enter a court order or the Division of Child Support Services (DCSS) may establish
paternity without going to court. Also, an Acknowledgment of Paternity may be signed by both parents at the
hospital when the child is born or anytime thereafter and filed with the court.
For more information visit the following web sites:
Where can I get forms to assist me in establishing paternity?Forms are available from the Self-Service Center, DES, DHS or at hospitals. In
Maricopa County, forms are available through the Self-Service Center located at the downtown, the southeast
and northwest courthouses. Forms also may be obtained on the Internet. I am supposed to take a class on parenting skills. Who do I contact?The Self-Service Center has a list of providers who offer classes on parenting
skills. See a listing of resources.
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The other parent is mistreating the children. How can I protect them?If you believe the children are in harm contact Child Protective Services at
1-888-SOS-CHILD and your local police department.
You can ask for an Order of Protection that includes the children or request Legal Decision Making and ask for an emergency
hearing. If you are married, you cannot ask for Legal Decision Making unless you have a divorce, annulment or legal
separation filed with the court. You can contact an attorney for legal advice, or go to the Self-Service
Center for emergency paperwork.How do I apply for Title IV-D services?You must contact the Division of Child Support Services (DCSS). DCSS is a
Division of DES that is charged with the statewide administration and operation of the Child Support
Enforcement Program as established by Title IV-D of the Social Security Act. The web site is:
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What are IV-D services?Title IV-D services are for any person with Legal Decision Making of a child who needs help to
establish a child support or medical support order, any parent who already has a support order who needs help
to collect support payments, or any noncustodial parent can apply for IV-D child support.
If you are receiving public assistance from Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), or Medicaid or
federally-assisted Foster Care programs, you have been automatically referred to the Division of Child
Support Services (DCSS) for services. See the DCSS web site for more information.How do I add a Father's name to the birth certificate?There are several ways to add the Father's name to the birth certificate.
If both parents agree who the biological father is, you can sign a statement called an Acknowledgment of
Paternity. These forms are available at all birthing hospitals, the Office of Vital Records, the Arizona
Department of Economic Security's Child Support Enforcement offices and many of the county registrar's
You can also establish court ordered paternity by competing paperwork and filing it with the court. A court
order to change a birth certificate must have the child's birthday on it. If you have a court order for
paternity, the order may be filed with the Office of Vital Records directly by the Court, the agency that
petitioned the Court for the order, or one of the parents may deliver it in person. If you decide to bring a
court order to the Office of Vital Records in person, you must bring a certified copy of the court order with
The father of my children agrees that he is the father. How can we get an order
from the court?If the Father's name is on the birth certificate you may not need a court order.
If you need a court order you can establish paternity voluntarily by completing paperwork. The father may
also sign a notarized affidavit, which declares that he is the father. This form must then be filed with the
Court. The information and forms can be downloaded at no cost from the Superior Court Self-Service Center web