Trust Your Family Law Case to Capable and Compassionate Hands
Attorney Tonya L. Whipple and the team at Day Shell & Liljenquist, L.C. provide comprehensive legal services for divorce clients throughout Utah. Our office hours are 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, but we offer evening and weekend appointments when needed. Our office is located near the Murray Central Trax station.
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Ensuring fair results in property divisions

The attorneys at Day Shell & Liljenquist, L.C. understand that you may be worried about the financial implications of your divorce. Our experienced divorce lawyers develop a strategy to get the best outcome for you. Since 1944, we have helped clients throughout Utah deal with the division of assets and liabilities and handle alimony disputes. We are the law firm that works for you.

What factors determine an alimony award?

Either party may be granted alimony, regardless of gender. A court considers a number of factors in determining alimony, including:

  • Financial condition and needs of the recipient spouse
  • Earning capacity or income potential
  • Ability of the paying spouse to pay
  • Duration of the marriage
  • Whether the recipient spouse has custody of minor children
  • Whether the recipient spouse worked in a business owned or operated by the payer spouse
  • Whether the spouse seeking alimony contributed to the earning capacity of the paying spouse

How long can alimony last?

Alimony may be ordered on a temporary basis pending trial or for a longer period after entry of a divorce decree. An enforceable prenuptial agreement can specify the amount of alimony. Utah law stipulates that, barring special circumstances, alimony may not be ordered for a period longer than the length of the marriage.

If alimony is ordered, the remarriage of the recipient ends the payer's responsibility. Additionally, alimony may be cut off if the payer can prove that the recipient is cohabitating with another person.

What are the rules for dividing assets in Utah?

Utah law requires that the division of marital property be fair, but not necessarily equal. Even in uncontested divorces or annulments in which the parties have agreed on the division of property, a judge still must review the agreement to ensure fairness. Once the divorce is final, property division cannot be reopened except in rare circumstances. Factors that Utah courts consider when dividing assets include:

  • Length of the marriage
  • Age and health of the spouses
  • Occupations of the spouses
  • Income and earning potential of the spouses

For long-term marriages, a judge applies the relevant factors and decides whether it is fair to give one party more or less than 50 percent of the property. In the case of short-term marriages, the court may try to put the parties back into the economic situations they had before the marriage.