When people decide they want to divorce, they usually want it done quickly. Quickly is a relative term in the law. It usually means somewhere between “way too long” and “holy crap, when will this end already?”

When our clients ask how fast they can get divorced, I tell them ninety days is the shortest realistic time frame. This is because the Utah Legislature doesn’t much like divorce, so they make people wait to get one.

In fact, Utah Code, Section 30-3-18 says everyone has to wait ninety days from the time divorce is filed before it can be finalized.

The only way around this is by proving you have “extraordinary circumstances” that necessitate waiving the waiting period. As you can imagine, “extraordinary circumstances” are pretty hard to prove.

Last time we had the waiting period waived was when a guy came in and was getting married in two weeks. He had been separated for thirteen years. We filed the motion and explained the situation to the judge, who, thankfully, had mercy on the poor guy and let him get married on time.

If you want to waive the ninety days, you’ll need to file a motion, probably titled something like “Motion to Waive Ninety-Day Waiting Period for Divorce Finalization.” You’ll need to explain to the Court in great detail your situation and why you think you qualify for extraordinary circumstances. You also have to file a proposed order (in case the judge grants your motion) and request to submit for decision (so your motion gets to the top of the judge’s queue to read). Don’t skimp on details here. If you give the judge some generic reason for wanting to waive, your motion will be denied for sure.

P.S.: for more on Utah’s ninety-day waiting period, read here and here.

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