Utah Divorce Steps

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Divorce steps are the means to understand the divorce procedure and carry it out properly. They not only help the applicant to know about divorce stages, but also ensure that a divorce process is handled without making any serious mistake. The steps in every state will differ according to the state laws. Following is a short account on the Utah divorce steps.

Sequence of Utah Divorce Steps

A divorce is taken by the spouses to end their marital relation forever. It is a legal process and it should be carried out by submitting the required documents and fulfilling legalities related to it. The first requirement to be completed is of residency. A person has to be a domiciled resident of the state in order to be eligible for filing a divorce petition in that state. Utah law requires the applicants to be a bona-fide residents of the state for a minimum period of three months. Only after presenting the proof of residency for this specific period, a person would be entertained by the court for the registration of the case. Further, following steps are taken:

  • The divorcing partner selects a lawyer and provides the lawyer information essential to make pleadings
  • The Petitioner prepares and files the divorce complaint
  • The Petitioner must serve the complaint to the Respondent within 120 days from the filing date
  • If the Respondent is in this state, then he or she is allotted 20 days to file an Answer and if out of this state, then thirty days to file an Answer
  • If the Respondent does not file an Answer, the court enters a Default Judgment
  • After 90 days have passed since the filing of the Complaint, the court can enter the Divorce Decree. However, the court, in its discretion, may waive this requirement
  • The Respondent may file a counter petition with the Answer and serve these documents to the Petitioner
  • From this juncture, the divorce case may proceed in one of the following two ways

First method

  • There might be an attorney planning meeting
  • The court might issue a discovery and case management order
  • These are initial disclosures
  • The divorcing partners undergo the discovery process
  • There is a motion for trial setting or a Certificate for Readiness for Trial
  • A pre-trial settlement conference is held along with the Commissioner. The intention is that the parties should reach a settlement
  • If the parties fail to settle, then a pre-trial settlement conference is held with the judge
  • The next divorce step is of Trial
  • The proposed findings of fact, proposed decree of divorce and conclusions of law are submitted in the court

Second method

  • A mandatory mediation is conducted. However, the mediator, the court or the director of dispute resolution programs may excuse either party from the need to mediate under some considerable grounds
  • Such mediation may result in settlement. If a settlement is reached, the proposed findings of fact, proposed decree of divorce and conclusions of law are submitted in the court

The common divorce steps after following any of the above two methods are as follows:

  • The court issues the decree of divorce, conclusions of law and findings of fact
  • If either divorced partner feels so, he or she may appeal against the orders issued by the court

Points to note regarding Utah Divorce Steps

  • If the issues like child custody and parent-time are in conflict during the discovery phase, the divorcing partners may request to evaluate parent-time and / or custody
  • While the divorce case is pending, the divorcing partner may request temporary orders pertaining to spousal support, child support, etc. and these might be granted. These orders are generally issued if there is any history of violence by any of the spouses or threats given to any of the partners and children. The temporary orders are issued by arranging an immediate hearing
  • If the divorcing couple has minor children, both the divorcing partners must have either waived or attended the following:
    • Mandatory orientation course for divorcing parties
    • Mandatory educational course for divorcing parents

Such as the functioning of the court in the matter of divorce. The analysis clearly shows that the Utah divorce steps are going to different in each case depending on the type of dissolution and relations between partners. But, the primary and important steps will remain the same such as filing of a divorce and issue of divorce order.

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