Uncontested Divorce in Ogden Utah
Any divorce can be devastating; however, a contested divorce creates additional havoc and stress. It therefore makes sense to avoid it if possible. It will be easier on both your finances and sanity. This is particularly true if you have minor children or own a business that might suffer from a prolonged contest.
If you cannot come to an agreement, then your divorce becomes contested and you will have to go before a judge who will resolve the issues surrounding your case. This is far more expensive and time consuming than the uncontested option as you will need to work extensively with attorneys to prepare for trial. Additionally, custody evaluations will be required for any minor children, adding to their stress.
To minimize pain for both yourself and your children, it therefore behooves you to reach agreement with your spouse. If you can reach accommodation, you can file for an uncontested divorce. This article provides a general overview of what that involves in Utah. If, after you read this information, you still have questions, please contact us at Kaufman, Nichols & Kaufman for advice about your particular situation.
Overview of the Process for an Uncontested Divorce in Utah
In order to file for divorce in Utah, you and/or your spouse must be state residents for at least 3 months prior to filing. If minor children are involved, then the requirement for residency is 6 months. Note that you can file for an uncontested divorce whether or not you have children.
Additionally, in order to avoid a contested divorce, you will need to reach agreement on all issues pertaining to the divorce. These include:
- division of property including both personal and shared assets and real estate
- division of debts and liabilities
- alimony or spousal support
- any other issues pertaining to your marriage
Additional Considerations if Minor Children are Involved
If you and your spouse have minor children, then you will also have to reach agreement on issues relating to them. These include:
When you file for divorce, custody and visitation must not be requested; instead, there should be a written and notarized agreement already resolving these issues.
Additionally, as parents of minor children, you and your spouse must complete a mandatory Divorce Education Course.
Additional Issues Surrounding Business Ownership
Because Utah is an equitable distribution state, only marital property is subject to division. This means that each party retains ownership of assets brought into the marriage and only marital property will be divided.
If a business was acquired during the marriage, it may be considered a joint asset and both parties may have a stake in it. In this situation, it behooves them to come to an out-of-court agreement. Some suggestions for equitable distribution include:
- Both spouses retain ownership and divide any profits or losses
- One person buys out the other’s share in the business
- The business is traded for another asset of similar value
- The business is sold, and the proceeds are divided between both parties
Completing your Divorce
There is a mandatory 90 day waiting period to complete a divorce in Utah. This waiting period can be waived in extraordinary circumstances.
You will not be required to attend a court hearing. Assuming that your paperwork is in order and that the judge in charge of your case finds your agreement reasonable, he or she will sign the Findings and Decree of Divorce. When the judge does so, your divorce becomes final.