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Hurdle to Divorce Could Advance in Utah

by Norris Law Group on March 19, 2014

utah state houseYahoo! News published a February 2013 report by the Associated Press stating that in 1994, Utah became the first state to require that married couples complete eventually became a two-hour, $55 seminar before Utah courts will grant a divorce.

Utah State Representative Jim Nielson now proposes to require that couples take at least part of the course even sooner, in the hopes that it may decrease the divorce rate, especially among couples with children. Rep. Nielson is quoted, “If you’ve gotten so far down the road that you feel like you’re pretty much done, you’re not going to rethink something that you’ve spent that long moving toward.”

In the first hour of the current course, instructors review the Utah divorce process, while emphasizing that couples may still choose reconciliation over divorce. That’s the key portion that Jim Nielson says should come sooner. He proposes that before parents get custody rights or financial orders, they need first to have been granted the course certificate. The proposal would exempt people seeking protective orders.

Utah’s divorce rate is just slightly above the national average. It has waned in recent years, mirroring a dip in the state’s marriage rate.

Nielson’s bill is expected to pass.

Attorney Graham Norris and his associates at the Norris Law Group serve the residents of Utah County and throughout Utah in the area of divorce. Contact them today at 801-932-1238 or online for a free consultation.

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