While there are many reasons for couples to seek a divorce and hire a divorce lawyer, infidelity is one that often results in strong emotions and acrimonious proceedings. Traditionally, men have always been more likely to pursue extramarital affairs, but women are now beginning to gain on men when it comes to cheating. This is because women in Utah and across the country are more financially independent and less concerned about the financial consequences of divorce if they are caught cheating.
A recent survey from the National Opinion Research Center reveals that cheating by wives has increased around 40 percent during the past two decades. In 2010, 14.7 percent of wives admitted to cheating. Of the husbands surveyed, 21 percent confessed to cheating, a figure that has remained steady over the years.
There has been a rise in divorce cases caused by the wife’s infidelity. This may be indicative of a cultural change in our society that enables women to join the workforce and earn their own income. Additionally, the rise of social media use has contributed to the start of many affairs. Despite this increase, husbands are still more apt to commit adultery, with 25 percent of those who cheat claiming to be unhappily married.
Utah couples who seek a divorce typically desire as single individuals to maintain the standard of living that they enjoyed during their marriage. However, infidelity is rarely a factor when it comes to asset division and spousal support because our state has a no-fault approach to divorce. It may be in each spouse’s best interest to seek legal advice during the divorce proceedings in order to ensure a fair settlement.
Utah Grandparents’ Rights for Visitation After a Divorce
While it is not always discussed, the visitation rights that must be considered in the wake of a divorce can include more than those of the divorcing parents. In some situations, visitation rights for grandparents also become an issue – and, occasionally, litigation ensues as a result.
Grandparents are becoming increasingly involved financially in their grandchildren’s lives, as the recession led to financial difficulties for many young families. According to the AARP, one-quarter of American grandparents spend over $1,000 each year on their grandchildren. Even more surprising, 37 percent of the grandparents surveyed indicated they helped pay for the expenses associated with daily life.
Despite the increased financial involvement of American grandparents, their visitation rights after a divorce have become somewhat diminished nationwide, following a 2000 U.S. Supreme Court case. The high court struck down a law from Washington state that permitted any third party, including grandparents, to ask state courts for visitation rights, even if the parents objected.
Although this ruling led many states to abolish their grandparents’ visitation rights laws, Utah grandparents still have certain rights to see their grandchildren after the parents obtain a divorce.
Rights of Utah Grandparents
Utah laws provide that grandparents can file a cause of action to obtain visitation rights when a divorce or “other proceeding involving custody and visitation issues” is pending.
Courts start with the presumption that the decision made by the parents with regard to the grandparent’s rights to visitation is in the child’s best interest. If the grandparent is able to prove certain other factors to rebut the presumption, the court may award them visitation rights, though. Some of those factors include whether the parent is “unfit or incompetent,” or the grandparent “acted as the grandchild’s custodian or caregiver, or otherwise has had a substantial relationship with the grandchild, and the loss or cessation of that relationship is likely to cause harm to the grandchild.”
Determining visitation rights after a divorce is difficult for everyone involved. Consulting with a skilled family law attorney can ensure each party’s voice is heard.
Free Consultation with Divorce Lawyer
If you have a question about divorce law or if you need to start or defend against a divorce case in Utah call Ascent Law at (801) 676-5506. We will help you.
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States
Telephone: (801) 676-5506