This page is about divorce lawyers in Utah…
You’ve been married for a while now, but you’re pretty sure your marriage is over. The writing has been on the wall for a long time.
Even though you’ve come to terms with the fact you’re getting divorced, you still feel unsure about going through with the process. And that makes sense since you don’t know anything about how divorce really works.
That not knowing can create anxiety and fear when you ask yourself these sorts of questions:
- What will happen with the kids?
- What will happen with the home?
- Will I have enough money to survive after divorce?
- How do I even begin the divorce process in Utah?
And what does anyone do nowadays when they have questions? They turn to the internet.
And now you’re here, looking for trustworthy information from divorce lawyers in Utah. Great. As someone who’s been a divorce attorney for a long time and who’s helped thousands of people through divorce, I hope I can help take away your fear and anxiety by giving you the information you need.
First Thing: Your Kids
If you have kids, they are automatically the most important part of your divorce. You will do anything for your kids, and spend whatever is necessary to do what’s right for them.
Since your kids are your #1 priority, getting custody and parent-time correct, is OUR TOP PRIORITY.
When determining custody and where your kids will spend their time, there are a few really important factors we and the courts consider, for example:
- Who the primary parent is (i.e., who is more involved in the kids’ lives and who spends the most time with them)
- If you’re already separated, where the kids have been spending their time
- Is a parent’s work schedule conducive to caring for the kids?
- Who will foster a good relationship between the kids and the other parent (please, do not badmouth your soon-to-be ex around your kids)
- Is one parent involving the children in the divorce process?
- History of committing domestic violence and other types of abuse
- Drug use
When we sit down and talk during your initial consultation, we will discuss your kids, examine the factors above, and develop a specific legal strategy to help you maximize the time you have with your kids.
Second Thing: Your Money
After kids, your money is the most important aspect of your divorce. Our job is to help you maximize your money through the divorce process.
When you sit down with you divorce lawyers in Utah, during your initial consultation, we will discuss all aspects of your family’s financial situation, for example:
- Assets division
- Debt division
- Child support
- Expenses regarding your kids (e.g., extracurricular activity fees, school fees, daycare costs, insurance, etc.)
If you’re not exactly sure about your finances, don’t worry, you’re not alone. We’ll go over everything and give you the best idea about your finances that we can, and then we’ll protect you and your money during the divorce process.
Third Thing: The Process
As a divorce lawyers in Utah, my team and I have met with over 10,000 people. One of the most common questions people ask is, “What is the divorce process like? How does it work?”.
This is our process in a nutshell. Now, keep in mind that other firms may do things differently because they are more litigious than we are — in other words, they like to fight needlessly. On the other hand, we want to get you through your divorce with as little fighting and airing of dirty laundry in court as possible. This not only helps keep your cost down, it decreases the stress on you and your kids, and it tends to get your case done quicker.
Step 1: The divorce complaint
The first thing we do is gather information from you about you, your spouse, your kids, and your finances. When we receive this information, we use it to draft your divorce complaint.
You read the complaint and make sure it says what you want it to say, and that it asks for exactly what you want.
After you okay the complaint, we file it with the court, and then we serve your spouse with the papers. It’s when your spouse receives the complaint that the divorce process really begins.
Step 2: Mediation
After your spouse hires an attorney, which is likely to happen, we will contact the other attorney and begin scheduling mediation.
We almost always start with mediation because that’s where 98% of our cases get finalized.
Now, if we need to address immediate problems, like your spouse is not letting you see the kids, or your spouse has removed you from the bank accounts and left you without money, then we will prepare temporary orders.
Temporary orders allow us to come before the court quickly and address problems of immediate concern that can’t wait until later. If we go to temporary orders, it means something has gone wrong, and we will be as aggressive as we believe helpful to fix the problem.
Don’t worry. While we like to negotiate and work things out, if we need to put on boxing gloves and punch someone in court, we will do exactly that for you.
In mediation, we will be with you in one room, and your spouse will be in another room. The mediator, who is a third party neutral, will go back and forth between the rooms and help facilitate negotiation.
If we agree on everything in mediation, you and your spouse will sign an agreement, and your case will be effectively finished. We will finalize the paperwork, and you’ll be divorced.
Step 3: Litigation
If you can’t come to an agreement in mediation, which sometimes happens, we will move forward with the litigation process.
That may include discovery, which is the gathering of information by written questions and requests for information. Discovery might also include depositions, which are live testimony taken outside court in order to gather information we need to know before trial.
Litigation might also include a custody evaluation. A custody evaluator is a psychologist or mental health professional who meets with you, your spouse, and your kids, and evaluates who should receive what custody and parent-time.
Custody evaluations are a long, expensive process, and we only engage in them if absolutely necessary to protect your kids and your interests.
And, then, there’s trial. We go to trial on maybe 1%–2% of our divorce cases. Trials only really happen in three instances:
- One or both spouses are unreasonable and not willing to negotiate.
- The case is a very close call legally speaking.
- The situation is winner-take-call (i.e., someone gets 100% and the other person gets 0%), and it’s worth it to have a judge make the decision.