At Red Law, we pride ourselves in the fact that we have delivered consistently excellent results to our family law clients for a long period of time. We specialize in divorce, custody, modifications, paternity cases, guardianships, and other family law related issues. We are experienced not only in drafting the documents necessary to close cases, but we have extensive experience actually litigating complex issues inside the court room. We know how to negotiate amicable resolutions, but we also know how to utilize all legal tools to aggressively fight for you.
We understand that for most people, your court case is the most important thing in your life. We know that the best thing we can do to help you move on with your life is to help you get what’s most important to you and do it as quickly as possible. No matter what your legal issue, we provide you with real, honest, and reliable advice so you can properly assess your options and decide the outcome of your own life. If you are looking for experienced representation, please don’t hesitate to call your family law firm in Ogden and schedule a consultation.
To start any Divorce in Utah, one must start by filing a Petition for Divorce. In this Petition, you will set forth all of the issues you want the court to address, including custody, child support, assets and debts, alimony, retirement, and others. If both parties agree on all the terms of their divorce they may be able to have the entire case resolved in approximately 30 – 60 days. In a case where both parties fight over everything, a divorce can last years. To learn more about each aspect of a divorce, explore our menu options.
There are two types of custody: legal custody and physical custody. Legal custody is the parent’s ability to take part in any discussions regarding decisions that may impact their child’s life, and ultimately the ability to have input in those decisions. Physical custody is the amount of actual time a parent spends with their children, but more specifically it is the number of overnights they have with them. Any time a parent reaches 111 or more overnights each year they have crossed the threshold to have joint physical custody.
The amount of child support a parent will pay or receive is usually pretty straightforward. The court will take the incomes of both parties, the number of overnights each party has the children, and how many children the parties have, and run it through a Utah Child Support calculator. Whatever number the calculator arrives at is what a parent will pay or receive. However, if you are a parent that gets paid with commissions, are a business owner, or your payment otherwise fluctuates, then the process can become more complicated.
Property & Debts
Utah Divorce Courts split property and debts equitably. Equitably does not necessarily mean equally. Equitably means that we take into account all of the factors related to your divorce (any alimony award, income of both parties, who incurred certain debts and what those debts were for, whether the divorce was the fault of one of the parties, etc.) before ultimately deciding which party should be awarded which debts and assets. When it comes to the parties’ home, the courts usually do one of three things: (1) order that the home be sold and the proceeds divided; (2) allow one party to refinance the home and buy out the other spouse’s share of the equity; (3) award the home to the parent who gets custody of the children and try to offset that award by giving the other parent more of the parties’ other marital assets.
Alimony starts as a “needs based” analysis in Utah. In short, it looks like this: if the parties have been married approximately 6 or 7 years or more, the court will look at both spouse’s reasonable expenses and their income. After accounting for reasonable expenses, if one spouse has excess income and the other doesn’t have enough income to meet their reasonable expenses, then the court will take the excess income from the first spouse and give it to the second spouse. However, the alimony analysis doesn’t stop there and can get rather complicated. To learn more about alimony, explore our menu.
Utah courts require every divorce, custody, paternity, or modification case to go through mediation before the parties have a trial. For these types of cases, most mediators will put each party in a separate room with their attorney. The mediator will go back and forth between rooms, delivering messages between the parties and attempting to facilitate an agreement between the two. Many Utah family law mediators are experienced in resolving these types of very personal cases and can help the parties explore all options and create tailor-made options that help the parties achieve their goals. The major benefit of mediation is that it gives people control over their ultimate destiny. Unlike a trial before a judge, in mediation you get to have the final say in what your future looks like.