One issue that must be hashed out in a divorce is property division. Any property that was acquired during the marriage must be documented and the agreement reviewed by the court for proper distribution.

Utah is one of the majority of states with equitable distribution of assets. This means fair, but not always equal. The judge presiding over your case will review the agreement to ensure that it is indeed fair. Once the division is made, it usually cannot be altered except in extraordinary circumstances.

If you inherited property while married, that is yours to keep. If you received assets as a gift, they are also yours alone. If you owned property before getting married, you get to keep it. Unfortunately, if you used some of your inherited assets to upgrade the marital home, those assets are considered marital property and will be treated as such by the courts in Utah.

Fair distribution means several things. It takes into consideration how long the two of you were married, both of your ages, the health status of each person involved, what you both do for a living and the amount of income that you both bring in.

For a long-term marriage, the judge may give it a 50-50 split. Then again, he has the right to make it 40-60. It is completely up to the court. For a short-term marriage, the judge will probably want to put you both back to what you were before you were married.

If you are thinking of getting a divorce and you need advice and a listening ear that is knowledgeable about the laws of the state of Utah, you may want to call in a legal professional.

Source: Utah Courts, “Property Division,” accessed Jan. 22, 2016

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