Yuma, AZ – While people generally associate witnesses with criminal and civil cases rather than family law trials, it is possible that witnesses are called into court in a divorce case. It is most common for witnesses to testify about a person’s parenting ability during a custody hearing, but there are also other reasons why witnesses are used in divorce trials. 

Anyone who is about to start the process to divorce should discuss the specifics of their case with their lawyer, including whether a trial with witnesses will be necessary, or if the case can be settled without a trial. 

Objective accounts

Having someone who knows a family, but is not biased towards either party can be significant. This is because a parent, sibling, or friend of one spouse is likely to portray them in a positive light, while attempting to secure a more favorable result for their side. However, parties such as doctors, housekeepers, business associates, and others who have seen the family interact but do not have an interest in the outcome of the divorce case often make the best witnesses. This is especially true if there are disputes related to property and spending habits, or other contested matters such as one spouse committing adultery. 

Child custody issues

While character evidence is not admissible in many kinds of trials under the state and federal rules of evidence, it is crucial in custody disputes. The history and actions of a parent can reflect on their ability to raise a child safely and effectively. One of the best ways to prove a person’s ability to take care of a child is to have an objective witness speak about their past, whether this includes positive or negative behaviors. 

Property division

In some divorces, personal and real property can have significant value, so proof of ownership or use may be necessary during the trial. Because property will sometimes be given to one spouse based on the notion that it is their separate property, testimony of a witness can often establish custody of the item or property outside of the marriage. 

Private investigators

Sometimes, a spouse may hire a private investigator shortly before a divorce to obtain hard evidence of problems like theft, poor spending, or adultery. The witness may be called to testify at a divorce trial for the purpose of introducing any evidence that they have found, as a proper foundation needs to be set to introduce items such as pictures or written documents. 

Learning more from a family attorney

Schneider and Onofry is a family law practice in Yuma, Arizona. Their attorneys can help people with divorces, child custody disputes, alimony payments, child support payments, and related issues. 

Firm contact info:

Schneider & Onofry, P.C.

207 W. 2nd St., Yuma AZ 85364



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