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Utah Family Law Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Utah on
Q: My son lives in Utah and has a Final Visitation Order in place from GA. It states his daughter can travel to UT from GA

when she turns age 6, which will be this July. Mother is denying travel/visitation to UT due to Coronavirus. Can she do this?

Lane Wood
Lane Wood answered on Jul 3, 2020

Unfortunately, your question can't be answered with a simple yes or no. Since the Order is in place in GA and it sounds like the child and her mom remain in GA, the answer to this may depend on how GA is treating such arrangements during COVID. You may want to ask this same question in the GA... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce and Family Law for Utah on
Q: married in CA for 8 months, Legally separated now for over 10 years, need to complete divorce, both in agreement.

Both looking for easiest and cheapest option to complete this, No children or assets, just need to get done.

Mike Branum
Mike Branum answered on Jun 23, 2020

If one of you has lived in Utah for at least 90 days and you both are in agreement with no assets or children, you should be able to go to https://www.utcourts.gov/howto/divorce/ and obtain everything you need to get it done.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody, Criminal Law and Family Law for Utah on
Q: My daughter is in prison and needs a lawyer for custody case. She asked me to find her a pro bono lawyer and Im looking

For info on how to go about this?? Thank you

William Melton
William Melton answered on Jun 17, 2020

You can contact the Utah State Bar. They have resources to direct you to legal help. Also, you can contact the Utah Legal Aid Society. They will be great resources.

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce and Family Law for Utah on
Q: I just received a judgment from the State of Utah on my ex husband. Is there a way to obtain this without an attorney?
William Melton
William Melton answered on Jun 10, 2020

Are you just looking for a copy of a judgment? Send me an email so we can talk. William@melton.law

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Utah on
Q: My daughter went to live with her dad, who she barely knows, in Wyoming and now he doesn’t want her to come visit me.

My daughter wanted to go live with her dad in Wyoming so I let her and signed a paper saying she lives with me but that she was temporarily going to live with him. She wants to come visit but now he’s saying he’s afraid I won’t bring her back. I’m the one that has had custody of her entire... Read more »

Mike Branum
Mike Branum answered on Jun 4, 2020

If she wants to come home - because your residence is her home - and you have court-ordered primary custody, you are certainly within your rights to go pick her up. I would do everything possible to reassure her father that you will keep him involved in her life and try to avoid drama. Conflict... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody and Child Support for Utah on
Q: What can be done failure to be served rule 109 with parentage petition, as well as ex statement of good joint cust pet?

Daughters dad has had no contact, but after several attempts to reduce child support, has now filed a joint custody petition, and served it on me.

First, he did not serve me rule 109, which was granted. Second, he did not include his statement of goodwill as required, with his petition... Read more »

Lane Wood
Lane Wood answered on Apr 28, 2020

I'm sorry that you are going through a custody fight. Custody battles are often hard fought and emotional. I will do my best to answer your questions, but I would also recommend that you seriously consider hiring an attorney to represent you. Custody determinations can have lasting effects on... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Utah on
Q: I was not married, but we filed the Voluntary Dec. of Paternity. Do I have any visitation rights, before I go to court?

As I understand it, (but could be wrong), in Utah, a father in divorce proceedings has automatic, and enforceable (though minimal) visitation rights, without having to go to court and ask for them, based on the idea that marriage is cause to assume paternity. If he wants more than the minimum, he... Read more »

Lane Wood
Lane Wood answered on Apr 10, 2020

The answer to your question is a little more complicated than a simple yes or no. Do you have parental rights before going to court? Yes, you absolutely do based upon the voluntary declaration of paternity. Does that mean you have visitation (Utah calls this parent-time) rights? Yes and no. You... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Criminal Law and Juvenile Law for Utah on
Q: Our13 year old son (who we’ve adopted out of foster care at age 5) has raped our two daughters age 10 and 3.

He has been charged with 21 counts of rape and sodomy between the two victims. County attorney representing my daughters states he will most likely get 6 months or less of treatment/incarceration. He has already admitted to his crimes to police. County attorney is going to reduce charges to gain a... Read more »

Brent J Huff
Brent J Huff answered on Apr 1, 2020

You can hire an attorney, in Utah victim's of crimes have a right to be heard. One thing you should know is that the juvenile justice system sentences offenders for different purposes that adults. In the District court, a criminal sentence is meant to serve retribution or punishment among... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce and Family Law for Utah on
Q: I was mailed an order from my ex husband that does not have a judge’s stamp or signature. Is this even valid?

This is for an order on order to show cause. My incorrectly spelled maiden name is also on it (and everything was filed with my married name). The certificate of service also does not have an address on it or my ex’s signature. This is in Utah.

Lane Wood
Lane Wood answered on Mar 5, 2020

Generally a court order will have an electronic signature stamp at the top right corner. If you have a question about whether or not it is valid, your best bet would be to call the Court to confirm. You could also do a consultation with an attorney who could check the docket online to give you... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Utah on
Q: My mom filed for custidy of my kids

She never told me & I was in a treatment center while i was in there she took my mail which had the letter from the court so I missed the court date & now I need to know what to do to get my kids back

Lane Wood
Lane Wood answered on Feb 18, 2020

You will want to get in touch with an attorney sooner rather than later. The answer to this question could vary greatly depending on what exactly happened to get custody of your kids. You will want to meet with an attorney who can look up the case to determine what was filed - guardianship, custody... Read more »

3 Answers | Asked in Divorce, Family Law, Adoption and Child Custody for Utah on
Q: Can my ex's sister, temporary guardian of our 16 month old daughter, legally restrict my visitation?

She has had our daughter temporarily for 7 months while we have fallen on hard times. We signed over temporary guardianship. He and I broke up and he's now at ODYSSEY house trying to get into the parent program with our daughter. Once she is there, the program will determine visitation. In the... Read more »

Lane Wood
Lane Wood answered on Feb 16, 2020

I’m sorry that you are going through these problems with your daughter. Any time you are dealing with custody issues, I suggest having an attorney. The initial decision is crucial and you want to make sure it is done right. It is always harder to change down the road.

Generally speaking,...
Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law, Family Law, Juvenile Law and Sexual Harassment for Utah on
Q: can you take 30 year old male relative sending 15 year old niece naked photos from snap chat app, pictures weren’t saved

Niece is 15 and her cousin is 30 he has sent her pictures or his private part but it’s sent from Snapchat and the pictures weren’t saved. The whole conversation is saved but no pictures. In the conversation he does state he’s going to send it and also more than once, he states in one of the... Read more »

Mike Branum
Mike Branum answered on Feb 7, 2020

The short answer is yes, you can sue. You could file a suit claiming negligence, intentional infliction of emotional distress, etc. The real question is does the pervy cousin have assets worth the fight? If he owns a home, has a high-paying job, or there is some other asset which may be able to be... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Utah on
Q: A non court ordered agreement of $900 a month for two kids. How do I go about changing that if she is not willing to

We have a non court order agreement of $900 a month for me the father to pay. Now the kids are old enough to stay home alone so they don't go to day care anymore and she makes about $700 more a month then I do. How should I go about changing that if she is not willing to and I think it is to... Read more »

Lane Wood
Lane Wood answered on Jan 29, 2020

Generally in a court order, child support and child care costs are 2 different things. Typically the court will order a monthly support amount and also include an order that you split all work related child care costs. It sounds like you agreed to a different arrangement where you made a monthly... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Support, Family Law, Libel & Slander and Personal Injury for Utah on
Q: What can i do if my custody case has other proceedings and or personal attacks against me from those who r on my ex side

my ex filed for full custody after i filed for support. well after out temporary orders hearing my ex and his attorney had requested things they know i cant do so there for my parent time has been taken from me even though i begged them to make it to where i can do them but they would not. My ex... Read more »

Lane Wood
Lane Wood answered on Jan 13, 2020

First and foremost, it sounds like you should consider hiring an attorney. It sounds like your ex and his attorney are taking a very aggressive approach in the custody litigation. Their approach seems to be working to keep you from the kids. I suggest finding an attorney who can help level the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody, Child Support and Sexual Harassment for Utah on
Q: Order to show cause?

I filed an order to show cause over a month ago and he never filed an answer. He does have an attorney and has since thw beginning. My court hearing is in 8 days and he just barely sent me a response today. In was just wondering if he's allowed to do that? Because in was told I had to file a... Read more »

Lane Wood
Lane Wood answered on Jan 3, 2020

I think that you may be confusing the time to respond to a Petition (likely for custody or divorce) and the time to respond to an order to show cause. The 21 days to respond applies to a Petition or complaint that is served upon you. On the other hand, an Order to Show cause has different... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Utah on
Q: Would I be able to move out of state with my daughter?

I have full custody and he has standard visitation. I was wondering if I'd be able to move out of state with my daughter and what steps I'd need to take to do so? Can I move if I give him notice and have a parenting planning place for when I move or do I have to get approval from the... Read more »

Brian Craig
Brian Craig answered on Jan 3, 2020

Utah Code section 30-3-37 governs relocation if the controlling decree does not address relocation.

At least 60 days before the planned move, the parent who plans to move more than 150 miles from the other parent must send the other parent a Notice of Relocation that tells the other parent...
Read more »

3 Answers | Asked in Family Law for Utah on
Q: If i file for visitation, do my children get a say in the matter?

I lost custody due to a very short-lived drug issue. I have been clean for over 3 years and completed all the requirements from the court. My ex husband wouldnt even let me talk to my kids until early this year. I got him to agree to let me see them every other weekend while he supervised. I want... Read more »

Brian Craig
Brian Craig answered on Dec 26, 2019

This is left to the discretion of the trial judge. Utah Code § 30–3–10(2)(p) indicates that one relevant factor in the best interest of the child includes “the stated wishes and concerns of the child, taking into consideration the child's cognitive ability and emotional maturity.” A... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Support for Utah on
Q: Can I file for default on an Order to show cause?

I filed an order to show cause for child support that the court ordered,( he hasn't paid in over a year and is a little over 4000 behind he also has a job and it's his 13th or 14th one in the last 3 years because he keeps quitting so hes basically not keeping a job to avoid paying.) I... Read more »

Lane Wood
Lane Wood answered on Dec 17, 2019

The answer to your question will depend on which court you are in. Orders to show cause are governed by local rules that differ from one district to the next. Generally speaking if an opposing party does not oppose a motion, the court will grant the relief requested. The process for getting that... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Family Law for Utah on
Q: How do you start visitation with your children when you're in Utah and your ex is in another state?

My ex has not let me see my daughter for a long time, other factors were an issue with this situation but aren't any more. I don't know where to start.

Brian Craig
Brian Craig answered on Dec 9, 2019

I suggest contacting a family law attorney. Jurisdictional issues involving different states can be complicated in child custody disputes. The Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (UCCJEA) defines the term as the state in which the child lived with a parent for at least six... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Utah on
Q: Can my ex deny visitation with no court orders for visitation?

I pay child support and we have never gone to court for custody or any visitation orders. No restraining orders or anything. We were never married. She even changed my son’s last name without my consent, even though I am on the birth certificate. I haven’t seen my son in 3 years. Can’t... Read more »

Mike Branum
Mike Branum answered on Nov 8, 2019

Unfortunately, you have little recourse without an order from the Court. I presume the child lives in Utah with the other parent. If you truly cannot afford the court fees, you can request a waiver. I would refer you to utcourts.gov and look at the self-help section for family law.

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