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Salt Lake City Family Law Blog

Understanding the impact of a paternity action

A determination of paternity has a number of important legal and emotional impacts for families. It can be an important to determine for child support and child custody purposes, as well as for purposes related to medical concerns or inheritance. A paternity action is a legal action to determine the legal identity of the father of a child. Paternity is determined by a DNA test that can be ordered by the court which will then legally establish the identity of the child's father.

A paternity action may be brought by a mother seeking child support or by a father seeking child custody rights. Paternity can be established through different methods depending on the circumstances of the child and parents, however, a paternity action is one option to enjoy the legal rights and emotional benefits of a legal determination of paternity.

Key points to remember about parenting time

After a Utah couple has chosen to end their relationship and move on, children can be a major concern. Sharing a child is a difficult situation when the parents are no longer together and the best interests of the child are paramount. There are certain points that the parents must bear in mind as the process moves forward.

The parenting plan will dictate the custodial parent and parenting time for the noncustodial parent as well as other factors. The parents are encouraged to consider how any decision will affect the child. This is beneficial as it gives the child a strong foundation and will mitigate any lingering concerns about the new situation. The parents must have a parenting plan for shared parenting and it is allowed for other agreements the parents formulate. There does not need to be a parenting plan if one parent is granted full legal and physical custody.

Premarital agreements have many important uses

Premarital agreements serve a variety of important uses. In addition to the important purposes a prenuptial agreement can serve such as the protection of soon-to-be spouses and property, premarital, or prenuptial, agreements can also help protect families in circumstances of a second marriage and in circumstances of blended families. Premarital agreements can help protect assets but also can help control the distribution of property in circumstances of separation, divorce or death.

Premarital agreements can address what property will remain separate property and what property will be considered marital property; clarify which spouse has responsibility for pre-existing debts, marital debts and other financial obligations; provide protection for the party that is not the debtor; describe how marital property will be divided in circumstances of divorce or death; and state agreements concerning life insurance policies, tax returns and retirement accounts.

Divorce can cause difficult financial situations

Without the right preparation, divorce can cause financial turmoil amongst newly single or soon-to-be single Utah residents. Even if you get along with your ex-spouse today, there is no guarantee that you will get along with them throughout the entire divorce. Experts have some suggestions for handling the various financial aspects of a divorce to ensure that your finances are protected during a sometimes long and complicated process.

First, you will need to make sure that you have your own credit identity separate from your spouse. If you don't have an individual account, you should get one as soon as possible so you can use your joint income to qualify. Joint accounts should then be shut down and remove your spouse as an authorized user on any individual accounts to prevent them from charging things to your card. The balance on the cards can either be paid off now to ensure that your spouse pays their portion, or can be addressed later in the process. If you choose not to pay it off now, you may want to put your spouse's portion of the debt in their own account so that only they are responsible for it.

How can I adopt a child through foster care?

The process for adopting a child through foster care in Utah is different from adopting privately or through an agency. Those who plan to adopt can consider all options before making a decision as to which method is best for them.

Children in foster care often come from abusive or otherwise unhealthy home environments. The state takes them in temporarily while they try to find them a safe, permanent home. In some cases, the child may be able to return home after their family meets certain requirements. However, in many cases, families interested in adopting a foster child can adopt a waiting child or foster-to-adopt.

How can I modify my child custody arrangement?

When you first get divorced in Utah, the court will likely approve a child custody plan to ensure that your children are properly taken care of. The plan will specify physical custody and legal custody issues so that both parents know where the child will stay primarily, and who will be able to be make various decisions regarding the child, such as decisions regarding schooling, activities and health care. The plan will specify parenting time, when and how often each parent will see the child and how the child will be transported from one parent to the other. A child support payment schedule will also be implemented.

However, many changes can occur in your life, and your ex-spouse's life. Medical issues, getting remarried, job loss, job relocation and other major life changes may warrant a change in the child custody arrangement.

Mistakes to avoid and tips to follow in a divorce later in life

Divorce can have a huge impact on your finances, especially if you are unprepared for what lies ahead. A study by Alianz Life found that over 60 percent of divorcees reported that their divorce caused serious financial issues in their newly single life. Many survey respondents said that their divorce was a wake-up call to get serious about finances.

Divorce can be difficult at any age, but it is particularly challenging for older adults. Many older adults have stayed in bad marriages for the sake of their children. Others are forced to divorce later in life when their spouse becomes abusive or develops an alcohol addiction. Older adults need to be particularly concerned about their finances and focus on supporting themselves after their divorce.

Shared parenting may be advantageous to children of divorce

When parents go through a divorce, the children must be made a priority no matter how stressful things get. A large part of a Utah divorce agreement will have to do with determining who gets physical custody of the children and how much parenting time the other parent will receive. In the past, courts favored mothers to be the primary caretakers of the children, but nowadays joint physical custody is strongly encouraged so that both parents play an equal role in their children's upbringing.

Studies have shown there are countless benefits to shared parenting, even if it may be difficult for the parents to deal with their ex-spouses. A number of studies on custody have revealed that children who spend at least 35 percent of their time with each parent are better off than children who live primarily with one parent and visit the other. Even if the parents live apart from each other, it is important that both parents are engaged in decision-making and everyday tasks involving the children.

TV host Aisha Tyler owes ex-husband millions in spousal support

When one spouse makes a significant amount of money while the other does not, spousal support may be awarded to the lesser-earning spouse upon the couple's divorce. Spousal support can be awarded to husbands and wives of all economic levels. The idea is to support the lesser earning spouse so they can maintain the lifestyle they became accustomed to during marriage.

Actress and talk show host Aisha Tyler has finalized her divorce from her husband of 20 years, Jeffrey Tietjens, and will owe him $2 million in spousal support. Tyler will pay him just over $31,000 each month for the next four years, from January 5, 2017, to January 5, 2021, for a total of $1.5 million. Additionally, she will pay $500,000 to Tietjens in cash to equalize the earlier division of community property between them.

Grandparents may have custody rights in Utah

One point of contention among many families is deciding on who is most qualified to care for children when their parents split up. In a large number of Utah cases, the child's mother or father will be awarded physical custody of the child while the other parent will be awarded visitation. Both parents may be involved in making major decisions regarding the best interest of the child.

However, in cases where neither parent is qualified or capable of raising the children, the children's grandparents may have the right to custody of the children. Utah courts, and courts all across America, are always focused on doing what is in the best interest of the child and will consider various factors when making this crucial child custody decision.

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