Divorce is a complicated procedure that’s never enjoyable. Divorce is costly, lengthy, emotional, and has particular stipulations and grounds that must be met in order for one to even occur. If your partner is asking you to leave or is asking for a divorce, knowing Utah’s divorce laws and the grounds for divorce is extremely important. Read on for what to do if your partner wants you to leave, what the grounds for divorce in Utah are, and what legal terms and agreements with which you will need to be familiar.
What to Do if Your Spouse Asks You To Leave
If your spouse asks you to leave or asks for a divorce, the first thing that you should do is retain legal counsel. While legal counsel is not required when filing for a divorce, an experienced divorce lawyer is highly recommended, especially if you are not the partner who is seeking the divorce. An experienced divorce attorney can provide you with valuable information about divorce law in Utah, and can provide you with brief legal facts or represent you throughout the duration of your case.
Utah Grounds for Divorce
If your spouse simply asks you to leave without reason, she does not have proper grounds for a divorce per Utah divorce law. In a case such as this, you have the right to remain in your home and continue your marriage. However, if your spouse asks for a divorce, it is likely that there is cause. In the case that the following grounds for divorce are met, your spouse is entitled to seek a divorce:
- Desertion for more than one year;
- Habitual drunkenness;
- Felony conviction;
- Cruel treatment;
- Irreconcilable differences;
- Insanity; or
- Living separately from your spouse for at least three years.
If none of these things have occurred within your marriage, it is possible that there are no grounds for separation, and a divorce will not be granted by the state. However, your spouse still has the right to file for divorce if they want.
Divorce Terms and Agreements
If your spouse files for divorce, there are a number of legal terms and agreements surrounding divorce that you should know. Divorce is a lengthy process—not only will you have to divide up assets as the court sees fit, but you will also have to discuss child custody issues and child support (if you have children), alimony, and the division of things other than property, such as debt, retirement benefits, and pensions.
Unfortunately, divorce is also expensive. While the specific costs of a divorce can vary depending upon a variety of factors, most divorces include the cost of filing the divorce petition, attorney fees, fees to serve the petition, online court assistance program fees, copying costs, record fees, and fees for divorce classes if children are involved.
How Long Will a Divorce Take?
Getting a divorce is a timely process. After your spouse files divorce papers, you will have 20 days to respond to the request. If you do not respond, your spouse will be granted what they asked for without regard for your opinion on the matter.
After you have responded to the divorce papers, there is a 90-day mandatory waiting period between the time the papers are filed and the time the divorce decree is signed. Often times the divorce is contested or there are issues that are not agreed upon. In this case, a mandatory mediation will be required for you and your spouse, which will significantly delay the process. Because of this, divorces can take many months to be finalized.
If your spouse is asking you to leave, know your rights and understand the process before acting. Retain legal advice, and familiarize yourself with Utah divorce law.