Divorce Law in Utah
Divorces happen. While that may be an unfortunate truth, it is also important to recognize that a divorce can be among the healthiest and most life-affirming choices that a person can make. But there is no doubt that a divorce is a challenging time. Divorce affects both spouses dramatically as well as other family members, especially children.
You need experienced, caring, and understanding lawyers to help you navigate the difficult and unclear road ahead, to help you and your family achieve the best outcome for your individual situation. We are confident, with our help, our clients can achieve the best results possible, and whether through settlement or litigation, can obtain a fair result. Our clients are often surprised that modern divorce doesn’t have to be as painful as it has been in the past. With our team of experienced attorneys, you will get the best result from start to finish. Our team is well experienced in the entire process to make it as painless as possible. We work for you, our clients, to help alleviate the stress and anxiety associated with divorce and get the best results.
It is crucial, if you are contemplating or going through a divorce, that you lean on the best support that is available. We have helped countless people not only to “get by” but to vigorously advocate for their reputations, their property, and their families. Please contact us to learn more about how we can help you deal with the various legal aspects of divorce.
What are the grounds for divorce in Utah?
In Utah there are two types of legally acceptable divorces, a “no-fault” divorce and a “fault-based” divorce. If you are considering a divorce, consult your lawyer and review the reasons before filing.
A No-fault divorce is legally acceptable under Utah Code § 30-3-1 if:
- You and your spouse have lived separately with court orders of separate maintenance for three years in a row.
- You and your spouse have irreconcilable differences.
A fault-based divorce will be granted if you can prove your spouse:
- Is a man who is naturally impotent.
- Has committed adultery after you got married.
- Is incurable insane.
- Was convicted of a felony after you were married.
- Is habitually intoxicated by the consumption of alcohol.
- Has committed willful desertion and stopped living with you for more than one year.
- Has committed willful neglect and has stopped providing for your common needs.
- Has caused you injury or great mental distress through physical or mental cruelty.
What are the basic steps for filing for divorce?
Consult a divorce attorney.
You are not required in the state of Utah to use a divorce attorney, but we highly recommend it. Divorces can get complicated and it is always smart to represent yourself well.
Prepare & file your divorce documents.
Your divorce case will be opened once you filed all the forms with the office clerk in your home county and paid the filing fee of $310.
Serve your spouse & wait for their answer.
Your spouse will have 21 days to respond. If they do respond, you and your spouse will have to present a financial declaration form to each other where you agree on who owns which items.
Complete a 90 day waiting period
It is mandatory in the state of Utah that the judge must wait 90 days after you and your spouse file your divorce papers before they sign the final divorce document.
Take part in a mandatory mediation session.
If you and your spouse aren’t able to reach an agreement through mediation, then it might be necessary to go to trial.
What are the residency requirements to file for divorce in Utah?
A Judge will be able to grant a divorce in Utah if you and your spouse have been a resident of the county for three months before filing for divorce. If you are not a legal resident of Utah, but a member of the armed forces and are stationed in Utah for three months, the Judge may also grant you a divorce.
Am I Eligible for Alimony in a Divorce?
A judge in the state of Utah may order alimony if the situation meets a certain criteria. Alimony is the financial support paid by one spouse to the other. To see if your situation is eligible for alimony, consider the following criteria under Utah Code § 30-3-5:
- Can your spouse afford to pay alimony?
- Is your ability to earn your own income decreased, including having less work experience because of being the primary caregiver to children?
- How long was your marriage?
- Does either party own a life insurance policy or annuity contract?
- Have you worked in a business owned and operated by the other spouse?
- Will your standard of living change considerably after the separation?
Our divorce attorneys have the grit and commitment to fight for your interests, the empathy to truly embrace your story, and the experience to preserve not only your family but your dignity as well. Whether you are just merely considering a divorce or have decided it is the right option for you and your family, we can help you understand your rights and the next steps involved. Call or sign up for a consultation with one of our experienced attorneys. We know that this is a challenging time, but we’re here for you.