When Does my Divorce Become Final?

You’ve been going through a divorce in Utah for a while now, and you’re wondering when it will end.

Maybe you just can’t wait to be divorced. Maybe you can’t wait to date or get remarried. Whatever the circumstance, your real question is: when will my divorce become final?

Let’s see what Utah divorce law has to say:

When decree becomes absolute.

(1) The decree of divorce becomes absolute:

(a) on the date it is signed by the court and entered by the clerk in the register of actions;
(b) at the expiration of a period of time the court may specifically designate, unless an appeal or other proceedings for review are pending; or
(c) when the court, before the decree becomes absolute, for sufficient cause otherwise orders.
(2) The court, upon application or on its own motion for good cause shown, may waive, alter, or extend a designated period of time before the decree becomes absolute, but not to exceed six months from the signing and entry of the decree.

Utah Code, Section 30-3-7.

Honestly, (1)(a) is really the part you should focus on. This says your divorce becomes final when the judge signs your divorce decree and the clerk files it. For all intents and purposes, these things happen on the same day, especially now that judges electronically file divorce decrees.

In all the case we have done, divorces become final the day they’re signed 99.999% of the time. The only real exception we’ve seen is if the other side appeals the court’s judgment.

In this sort of appeal situation, the judge will usually grant a bifurcation (more on this in another blog post) so everyone can stay divorced while the appeal process plays out.

If a judge were to suspend a divorce from becoming absolute under (1)(b), (1)(c), or (2), he or she would let you know in writing. Judges aren’t going to hide the ball when it comes to this sort of thing.

So, in almost every divorce situation in Utah, your divorce becomes final the day the judge signs your divorce decree.

Published On: January 12th, 2016Categories: CourtComments Off on When Does my Divorce Become Final?
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About the Author: Marco Brown
Marco C. Brown was named Utah’s Outstanding Family Law Lawyer of the Year in 2015. He graduated with distinction from the University of Nebraska College of Law in 2007 and is currently the managing partner of Brown Family Law, LLC.
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