A divorce is considered a contested divorce when the parties (you and your spouse) cannot agree on some of the terms of the divorce. These terms might include issues like child custody and parent time or issues involving property like who will get the house or even the dog.
Contested Divorce Process
The process in a contested divorce must always go through mediation before going to trial. Mediation attempts to bring the two parties together on as many terms as possible so that a trial will go quicker. If the parties end up agreeing on all terms during mediation then a stipulated agreement (an agreement with all the agreed-upon terms) is sent to a judge to sign. Once the judge signs the stipulated agreement, it becomes part of the divorce decree. In a case like this, no trial is needed.
If you do not agree on all terms during mediation then a trial is set. At trial, any contested, or disputed term will be decided by a judge. Depending on the matter at hand – alimony, child support, child custody, etc – the judge will use different standards to determine the best outcome. Once a judge has made a decision and has granted a divorce, then the only way to change its terms is through an appeal or through a modification. Either way could be very expensive, so make sure to get it done right the first time.
Utah Family Law Attorney
There is so much at stake for your family and the costs to change things afterward can be so high that hiring an attorney is often a life saver. We at Abbott Law Firm have the knowledge and experience to get you through this process and can advise you what is likely to happen and what is likely to not happen. In the end, we can take some of the fear of the unknown out of the process and give you some peace of mind during a difficult and stressful time.
Give us a call at (800) 460-5760 and we can discuss the specifics of your case.