Name Changes in Utah

You may be thinking of changing your name for any number of reasons — perhaps you’re getting married or divorced, or maybe you just want a name that suits you better. Whatever the reason, changing your name is a pretty simple process in most places; you can often do it yourself, without the help of a lawyer.

Why Change Your Name

Every year, thousands of people officially change their names. These are some common situations in which people seek a name change:

Name Changes in Utah

Name changes after marriage, divorce, or annulment

A woman may legally keep her birth name when she marries or she may adopt her husband’s surname — and in some states a man can now take his wife’s name as well. A husband and wife can change their last names to a combination of the two or something altogether different. Upon divorce or annulment, a spouse who has been using the other spouse’s name may revert back to a birth or former name. In states where same-sex marriage or its legal equivalent is available, one partner in a same-sex couple may also change his or her last name to the other partner’s, or the couple may hyphenate their name.

Name changes for unmarried couples

A couple need not be legally married to assume the same last name. For example, some same-sex couples choose to use the same last name as part of demonstrating their commitment to one another. The name may be the last name of one member of the couple, a hyphenated combination of the names, or an altogether different name that the couple shares.

Children’s names.

Often, a divorced parent with sole custody of the children wants to make sure the children have the same last name as the parent. If the custodial parent has changed her name since the marriage, she may want to change the children’s names as well. Sometimes legal guardians prefer a child to have their last name. Other times, mature children have a preference for a certain name.

Immigrant names.

Perhaps your great-grandfather changed his name — or had his name changed for him — when he came to the United States in the 1880s. As Americans rediscover their heritages, some want to change back to their original ancestral names. Of course, there is also the reverse situation — for someone who feels no connection with a heavy six-syllable name, shortening the name or changing it altogether may be an attractive idea.

Lifestyle and convenience.

Why be called Suzie, Jennifer, or Robert when you feel that BlackHawk, Randy, or Jon better expresses the real you? You can be as creative as you want in selecting your name—only a few legal limitations exist on choice of name. (These are discussed below.)

Name changes for transgender people.

If you have changed your sex, you may change your name to go with it, as well as your birth certificate under some circumstances.

Religious and political names.

Some people may wish to change their names to reflect religious or political beliefs. Famous political and religious leaders who have done this include Mother Teresa and Malcolm X.

Restrictions on Changing Your Name

There are some restrictions on what you may choose as your new name. Generally, the limits are as follows:

  • You cannot choose a name with fraudulent intent — meaning you intend to do something illegal. For example, you cannot legally change your name to avoid paying debts, keep from getting sued, or get away with a crime.
  • Your new name cannot interfere with the rights of others, which generally is defined as choosing the name of a famous person with the intent to mislead. For example, most judges will not approve your renaming yourself George Bush or Barack Obama unless you have a convincing reason not related to the famous politicians.
  • You cannot use a name that would be intentionally confusing. This might be a number or punctuation — for example, “10,” “III,” or “?.” (Minnesota’s Supreme Court once ruled that a man who wanted to change his name to the number “1069” could not legally do so, but suggested that “Ten Sixty-Nine” might be acceptable.)
  • You cannot choose a name that is a racial slur.
  • You cannot choose a name that could be considered a “fighting word,” which includes threatening or obscene words, or words likely to incite violence.

How to Change Your Name

In many cases, such as when you are getting married, divorced, or adopting a child, your name change can be easily handled as part of those legal proceedings. For example, if you are getting married and want to take your spouse’s name, you can use a certified copy of your marriage certificate to prove your new name. For name changes obtained during other legal proceedings, you can prove your new name using an order signed by the judge.

If your name change isn’t part of another legal proceeding, how to proceed depends on the rules in your state. Traditionally, most states allowed people to change their names by usage, without going to court. A name change by usage is accomplished by consistently using a new name in all aspects of your personal, social, and business life for a significant period of time. No court action is necessary, and it is free.

Practically speaking, however, you will probably want to get an official court document changing your name. In this day and age, with concerns about identity theft and national security, having a court order will make it much easier to get everyone to accept your new name. In fact, you won’t be able to get certain types of identification – such as a new Social Security card, passport, or (in most states) driver’s license – without a court document.

You can find out what your state requires by contacting your local clerk of court. Many state and county courts have name change information and forms on their websites. Check out the “Courts” or “Judiciary” section of your state’s or county’s home page.

Once you’ve completed your name change, you need to make sure you let all the relevant people and agencies know about your new name.

Your next best step is to talk to a family lawyer because that is who regularly goes to court and get this type of work done.

Free Initial Consultation with a Name Change Lawyer in Utah

It’s not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when. Legal problems come to everyone. Whether it’s your son who gets in a car wreck, your uncle who loses his job and needs to file for bankruptcy, your sister’s brother who’s getting divorced, or a grandparent that passes away without a will -all of us have legal issues and questions that arise. So when you have a law question, call Ascent Law for your free consultation (801) 676-5506. We want to help you!

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

Ascent Law LLC

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Do’s and Don’ts for Cohabitation

Even though a couple may not decide to get married, living together without a legal union may still have its own hardships. A couple that’s living together presumably will be sharing the cost of rent, utilities, food, and other daily expenses. There are also the intangibles when two or more people share a space, such as cultural preferences and personal hygiene. It’s important to keep in mind the following do’s and don’ts before becoming cohabitants with your significant other.

Do's and Don'ts for Cohabitation

THE DO’s

DO consider entering into a cohabitation agreement before moving in together. It can set the ground rules for the financial and other arrangements in the relationship, and may prevent a lot of headaches if the relationship doesn’t last.

DO hold title to any major purchases in the name of the person or persons who is/are actually paying for it. If you buy a car with your own down payment and make all the monthly payments yourself, the car should be in your name only. Joint purchases, however, should be in the names of both parties.

DO keep finances separate if you want to avoid heated disputes in the event the relationship terminates.

DO keep accurate records of your financial contributions to any property held by your partner.

DO write “gift” or “loan” on checks written to your partner if you want to negate any possible suggestion that you have been supporting him or her, which is an issue that can arise in a post-break-up “palimony” lawsuit.

DO remember that a never-married parent has the same child support obligations as a once-married parent.

THE DON’Ts

DON’T commingle your money by opening joint accounts, incurring joint debts, or making joint purchases if you want to avoid legal complications and the possibility of a “palimony” suit for support of your partner after a split.

DON’T allow your partner to hold title to major purchases in his or her name alone if you are both paying for that property, even if he or she orally agrees that the house or car belongs to both of you. The deed or title is more convincing evidence than one partner’s allegation of a spoken promise.

DON’T co-sign or guarantee debts that are incurred by your partner unless you intend to be equally responsible for paying them back, even if you should split up.

DON’T become so financially dependent on your partner that you limit your ability to support yourself in the future. Whereas divorced spouses may have the legal obligation to support each other, especially if one gave up a career to take care of the home and children, the same is not true of former cohabitants. Either keep up your skills and contacts in the job market, or consider a written agreement setting forth your partner’s legal obligation to help support you if the relationship ends.

DON’T hold yourselves out to the public as husband and wife, allow yourselves to be known as or referred to as “Mr. and Mrs. So-and-so,” or use the same last name, even casually, if you want to avoid the legal complications of a “palimony” suit or the potential for common-law-marriage status should the relationship end.

Free Initial Consultation with a Utah Lawyer

It’s not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when. Legal problems come to everyone. Whether it’s your son who gets in a car wreck, your uncle who loses his job and needs to file for bankruptcy, your sister’s brother who’s getting divorced, or a grandparent that passes away without a will -all of us have legal issues and questions that arise. So when you have a law question, call Ascent Law for your free consultation (801) 676-5506. We want to help you.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

Ascent Law LLC

4.9 stars – based on 67 reviews


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What Is Malicious Mother Syndrome?

Divorce and custody proceedings are often high-stress, contentious events that can cause extreme behavior on the part of those involved. Some cases have resulted in situations tied to what is often called “Malicious Mother Syndrome” or “Malicious Parent Syndrome.” This syndrome was first theorized by Dr. Ira Turkat (who is a psychologist) to describe a pattern of abnormal behavior during divorce.

It is important to note that Malicious Mother or Malicious Parent Syndrome is not currently recognized as a mental disorder by the medical profession. Rather, the syndrome describes a type of behavior at issue in some court cases and has lead proponents to call for further study and research.

What Is Malicious Mother Syndrome

When this syndrome occurs, a divorced or divorcing parent seeks to punish the other parent, sometimes going far enough as to harm or deprive their children in order to make the other parent look bad. Though most commonly called Malicious Mother Syndrome, both mothers and fathers can be capable of such actions.

Characteristics of Malicious Parent Syndrome

In his initial discussion of Malicious Mother Syndrome, Dr. Turkat sought to identify and describe a condition where one parent acts purposefully and vengefully towards the other during or following divorce.

Malicious Parent Syndrome is characterized by four major criteria. Someone suffering from the syndrome:

  1. Attempts to punish the divorcing parent though alienating their children from the other parent and involving others or the courts in actions to separate parent and child;
  2. Seeks to deny children visitation and communication with the other parent and involvement in the child’s school or extra-curricular activities;
  3. Lies to their children and others repeatedly and may engage in violations of law;
  4. Doesn’t suffer any other mental disorder which would explain these actions.

Examples of Malicious Parents

The idea of identifying a syndrome or mental disorder to explain the actions of extreme malicious behavior by parents during divorce arose from examples of vindictive parents in clinical and legal cases. Some of these behaviors include burning down the house of an ex-spouse, falsely accusing the other parent of abuse, or purposely interfering with planned parenting time.

In one particular example that could be called an instance of malicious parent syndrome, a mother told her children they could not afford food because their father had wasted all their money. In another, a parent repeatedly misinformed the other parent about school activities, so that the parent could not participate in the child’s school life. In all of these actions, the intent is to harm the other parent.

Psychological Consequences of Malicious Acts

When one parent goes out of his or her way to hurt the other, great strain can be put on both the harmed parent and their relationship with the child. In some cases, a parent who is repeatedly subjected to malicious acts by their ex-spouse may withdraw from their child’s life in order to avoid further conflict. A malicious parent may also successfully manipulate a child, resulting in them disliking and wanting to spend less time with the other parent.

Legal Consequences of Malicious Acts

Many of the behaviors associated with malicious parent syndrome can have legal consequences and may constitute civil and criminal law violations.

Some actions related to Malicious Parent Syndrome can be easily understood as criminal acts, such as attacking the other parent or damaging their property. Depriving children of food or money, in order to make the other parent look bad, could constitute a form of child abuse, which can violate both family and criminal laws. Similarly, should a malicious parent lie under oath, he or she may be charged with the crime of perjury.

Other acts related to Malicious Parent Syndrome may be violations of civil law. For example, denying a parent their court-ordered visitation rights can constitute illegal parent time interference and can result in fines, court-ordered counseling, and adjustments to custody and visitation plans. Lying about the acts of the other parent in a way which harms his or her reputation and results in actual injury can constitute defamation.

Malicious behavior by a parent can also impact parenting plans and custody arrangements. If a parent has been involved in alienating, cruel or illegal behavior, this conduct can be considered a factor in any proceeding to gain or adjust custody.

If You’ve Been the Victim of a Malicious Parent

If you or your children have been the victim of an ex-spouse’s vengeful behavior which may be a result of Malicious Mother or Malicious Parent Syndrome, you’re not without recourse. You may be able to:

  • have custody and support agreements modified,
  • seek court-ordered counseling for the malicious parent or
  • obtain supervised visitation.

Free Consultation with Divorce Lawyer in Utah

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 fight for you.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

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Parental Liability

Parental liability is the term used to refer to a parent’s obligation to pay for damage caused by negligent, intentional, or criminal acts committed by the parent’s child. Parental liability usually ends when the child reaches the age of majority and doesn’t begin until the child reaches 8 to 10 years old. Today, most states have laws relating to parental liability in various applications.

Parental Liability

Children’s offenses can be civil or criminal in nature. Civil cases are lawsuits brought by a person for money damages. Criminal cases, on the other hand, are brought by the government for violations of criminal law. Many acts can trigger both civil and criminal legal repercussions.

Civil Parental Liability

In most states, parents are responsible for all malicious or willful property damage done by their children. This is called civil parental liability because it’s non-criminal. The parent is obligated only to financially compensate the party harmed by his or her child’s actions.

Laws vary by state regarding the monetary limits on damages that can be collected, the age limits of the child, and the inclusion of personal injury in the tort claim. Hawaii’s parental liability law remains one of the most broadly applied as it doesn’t limit the financial recovery and imposes liability for both negligent and intentional torts by the minor child.

Criminal Parental Liability

Laws making parents criminally responsible for the delinquent acts of their children followed the civil liability statutes. In 1903, Colorado was the first state to enact a law against “contributing to the delinquency of a minor.” At least 42 other states and DC now have laws against contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

Other examples of criminal liability include firearm access and Internet crime related laws. Twenty-eight states and DC have child firearm access prevention laws that, generally, make it illegal for a parent to leave a firearm within reach of his or her child. Modernly, in some Internet access and computer hacking laws cases, a parent can be responsible for their child’s online crimes.

Minors and the Law

Parental liability only applies to your minor or underage children. The age of majority is the age at which a minor, in the eyes of the state law, becomes an adult. This age is 18 in most states. In a few other states, the age of majority is 19 or 21. You may want to check your state’s legal age of majority laws.

A minor is considered a resident of the same state as the minor’s custodial parent or guardian. If your minor child spends time with two parents in two different states, each parent is responsible for the child’s actions while in their care.

Insurance Coverage

Since homeowners or renters insurance includes both property and liability coverage, wrongful acts of children or negligent supervision claims may be covered even if the act took place away from a policyholder’s home. These policies typically cover legal liability in the event that anyone suffers an injury while on the insured property, even if the injury was committed by another household member or the result of negligence on the part of the policyholder.

Free Consultation with a Family Law Lawyer

If you have a question about parental liability in Utah, divorce, custody or other family law matters, please call Ascent Law at (801) 676-5506. We will help you.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

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Terminating Parental Rights

In the parent-child relationship, parents have some basic rights and responsibilities. Both parents automatically have the right to make decisions about the child’s education, religion, health care, and other important concerns. However, a court can take these rights away from a parent if he or she violates the law, or in the father’s case, never claims paternity. A parent can also voluntarily terminate his or her rights. Termination of parental rights ends the legal parent-child relationship.

Terminating Parental Rights

Involuntary Termination of Parental Rights

Each state has its own statute(s) providing for the termination of parental rights. The most common reasons for involuntary termination include:

  • Severe or chronic abuse or neglect
  • Sexual abuse
  • Abuse or neglect of other children in the household
  • Abandonment
  • Long-term mental illness or deficiency of the parent(s)
  • Long-term alcohol or drug-induced incapacity of the parent(s)
  • Failure to support or maintain contact with the child
  • Involuntary termination of the rights of the parent to another child

A parent can also lose his or her parental rights after being convicted of certain felonies. If a parent commits a crime of violence against his or her child or another family member, the court has the option to remove his or her parental rights and terminate the child-parent relationship. Also, if a parent is required to be imprisoned for a length of time that requires the child to enter foster care because there are no alternatives, the parent can lose parental rights.

Foster Care

If the termination of parental rights leaves a child with no legally responsible parents or guardians, the court will typically place the child in foster care. Before a state can terminate parental rights and place a child in foster care, it must file a petition under the federal Adoption and Safe Families Act (ASFA). However, state agencies aren’t required to petition in the following circumstances:

  • The child has been in foster care for 15 of the last 22 months.
  • The court has determined the child is an abandoned infant.
  • The parent committed murder or voluntary manslaughter of another of his or her children
  • The parent was otherwise involved in the murder or voluntary manslaughter of another of his or her children, i.e. aided, abetted, attempted, conspired, or solicited the act.
  • The parent committed a felony assault that resulted in serious bodily injury to the child or another of his or her children.

Many states have adopted statutes that provide for more protections of children in the above circumstances, shortening the wait times required before parental rights can be terminated and the child is placed in foster care. However, more than half of the states also have exceptions to these guidelines, such as when the child is provided for by a relative or the state believes complete termination of parental rights isn’t in the best interests of the child.

Child’s Best Interests

Most states consider a child’s best interests in termination proceedings. In some states, statutes use general language mandating that the child’s health and safety be paramount in all proceedings, while other states’ legislation lists specific factors that must be considered, such as the child’s age; the physical, mental, emotional and moral well-being; cultural and attachment issues; and the child’s reasonable preferences.

Reinstatement of Parental Rights

Most states don’t allow reinstatement of parental rights once they have been terminated. However, under some circumstances, such as when the child has not yet been permanently placed in a foster home, the parent may have the option to file a petition and show he or she has become fit to provide a safe and nurturing home.

Voluntary Termination of Parental Rights

Typically, parents voluntarily terminates their rights when they wish to give the child up for adoption. You can find information about consenting to an adoption at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Child Welfare Information Gateway.

Free Consultation with Family Law Attorney for Termination of Rights

If you have a question about how to terminate parental rights in Utah call Ascent Law at (801) 676-5506. We will help you.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

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Equal Rights for Fathers and Mothers

I live in the United States of America, and I’ve been a Child Custody Lawyer for long, long time, and I believe most people would agree is a country in which the equality of men and women is the greatest on earth.

Equal Rights for Fathers and Mothers

The U.S.A. works vigilantly to ensure that men and women are not treated unfairly under the law because of their sex and/or gender.

Equality Problems for Moms and Dads

One of which is the treatment of parents in child custody disputes.

Everyone knows as a de facto matter that women/mothers are generally favored over men/fathers in matters of child custody awards. The reasons why can be explained briefly by this excerpt from Wikipedia on the “tender years doctrine”:

Historically, English family law gave custody of the children to the father after a divorce because the father is able to provide the child. Until the 19th century, the women had few individual rights and obligations, most being derived through their fathers or husbands. In the early nineteenth century, Caroline Norton, a prominent social reformer author, journalist, and society beauty, began to campaign for the right of women to have custody of their children. Norton, who had undergone a divorce and been deprived of her children, worked with politicians and eventually was able to convince the British Parliament to enact legislation to protect mothers’ rights, with the Custody of Infants Act 1839, which gave some discretion to the judge in a child custody case and established a presumption of maternal custody for children under the age of seven years maintaining the responsibility from financial support to their husbands.[1] In 1873 the Parliament extended the presumption of maternal custody until a child reached sixteen.[2] The doctrine spread in many states of the world because of the British Empire. By the end of the 20th century, the doctrine was abolished in most of the United States and Europe.

Equal Rights In United States

Tender years doctrine was also frequently used in the 20th century being gradually replaced towards the end of the century, in the legislation of most states, by the “best interests of the child” doctrine of custody.[3] Furthermore, several courts have held that the tender years doctrine violates the equal protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.[4]

Even though it is said that the tender years doctrine was ostensibly abrogated in most of the U.S.A., it really hasn’t been. Culturally, the pervasive belief goes something like, “Let’s face it, everyone knows that women are generally better parents than men, so it’s a safe bet that awarding custody of the kids to mom is a safe bet.” And, frankly, there is some truth underlying this belief. Women carry their children for 9 months and develop a bond with their children in the course of pregnancy and birth. Only women can nurse. Women constitute the overwhelming number of personal care providers for a couple’s children, particularly their very young children. In the animal kingdom the “mama bear” is a real thing.

But a problem arises when courts approach a child custody award with an unfounded presumption that women are better parents than men and then “determine” that the mother is the better parent primarily based upon that presumption. That’s bias. That’s sexual discrimination, pure and simple.

I don’t have rigorously up to date data, but while equal custody awards are on the upswing, the estimates are that in the U.S. mothers are awarded primary custody at least 70% of the time, fathers receive primary custody slightly more than 10% of the time, and equal custody is awarded less than 10% of the time.

If this is the way the courts treat men and women in the U.S.A., I must hypothesize that countries that care less about preventing sexual discrimination favor one sex over the other even more when it comes to making child custody awards.

Divorce and Custody

Because divorce almost invariably changes the nature of both parents’ parental roles.

Where the husband/father has (usually) been, previous to divorce, the primary breadwinner, both parents will find themselves working, and usually working full-time for their individual support. The mothers end up taking on more breadwinner responsibilities. This and other consequences of divorce compel the fathers to take on more personal child caretaking responsibilities.

Regardless, the idea that “children are better off in the care of the mother than the father” is a notion that is hardly settled by hard data. Children don’t want one of their parents to be relegated to second-class status. Where two loving and fit parents go through divorce and both are ready, willing, and able to exercise joint custody of their children, it appears to me painfully and rationally obvious that the best “parent” [singular] is both parents.

Free Consultation with Child Custody Lawyer

If you have a question about child custody question or if you need help with a child support issue, please call Ascent Law at (801) 676-5506. We will help you.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

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Reasons Parents Lose Custody of Their Children

Although most laws are designed to help divorced parents maintain a healthy relationship with their children, there are times when some issues may disqualify divorcees from having legal custody of their kids. Most of these cases involve allegations related to child abuse or neglect. However, some allegations could be false statements from a contentious former spouse. If you are dealing with a child custody matter is best you contact a Salt Lake City child custody attorney to discuss your legal options.

Reasons Parents Lose Custody of Their Children

THE PROCESS

The process generally starts with one of the parents notifying the court about his or her concern involving a former spouse or parent of the children. Evidence must be provided otherwise the allegations of abuse are not valid. If the judge determines the behavior is a threat to the child’s safety, an investigation will take place. An investigator may take a look at the circumstances surrounding the allegations and decide whether or not the allegations are true.

CHILD ABUSE

This is a common reason why some parents may lose the custody of their children. The court will see if there is a history of child abuse. Some factors that help the judge determine if there was child abuse include scars, bruises, marks, and cuts. Whether it was initiated by anger or inappropriate behavior, child abuse will definitely cause the parents lose custody of their children. If you suspect your former spouse has abused your child, notify the police and contact Salt Lake City child custody attorney.

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

There are cases that don’t involve child abuse yet if the child witnessed child abuse against the other parent during the last 5 years; the court may deny sole child custody. A history of abuse will be considered when making custody decisions. Granting custody to an abusive parent is not in the child’s best interest.

DRUG AND ALCOHOL ABUSE

Courts will also take a look at other factors such as the use of controlled substances. The habitual use of drugs or alcohol by either parent is detrimental to the interests and safety of the kids, therefore, the parent addicted to these substances can’t be trusted with raising the children.

VIOLATING A COURT ORDER

Parents should respect custody orders. Doing otherwise may result in a parent losing custody. Although it’s all based on how the order was written, violating the order doesn’t help advance the case. Some cases involving joint custody, for example, require both parents making important decisions about the child. If one of the parents fails to consult the other parent before making an important decision, the custody order could be modified and the parent may lose custody.

PARENTAL ALIENATION AND CO-PARENTING

When one of the parents is manipulative and he or she uses these tactics to alienate the children from his or her former spouse, there is a chance he or she will lose the custody. Co-parenting is sometimes the best option in some scenarios as it allows parents that can’t get along to follow a strict joint custody schedule.

PROTECTING YOUR CHILDREN FROM PARENTAL ALIENATION

It is natural for children whose parents live apart to want to spend more time with them. Most children feel that they will not be able to spend enough time with mom and dad after divorce. Custodial parents generally have less time for the children due to the many responsibilities they have and non-custodial parents aren’t around as much as they used to. In the midst of all this chaos, some parents may take advantage of the situation and manipulate their children into fearing or expressing hostility towards their former spouses. This is when parental alienation takes place. A child may reject one parent following a harshly contested divorce. These cases generally require the intervention of a Salt Lake City divorce attorney. Several problems may arise that only an experienced attorney is equipped to handle.

Divorce can be one of the most frightening experiences for children since their lives may change dramatically after their parents decide to go separate ways. They have to adapt to a new family structure they do not like yet they have no control over it. Children need the love and care of both parents when growing up. Unfortunately, some parents don’t understand this and they choose to involve their children in a harsh divorce battle. It is a way to harm a former spouse by taking the children from them.

HOW CAN YOU PROTECT YOUR CHILDREN?

Let’s start by taking a closer look at the common signs of parental alienation:

  • The child avoids contact with the targeted parent for no particular reason.
  • The targeted parent is constantly being accused of wrongdoing.
  • The child says inappropriate things for their age.
  • The child feels confident about the rude behavior.
  • The child insists that it is their decision to no longer spend time with the targeted parent.
  • The child may also refuse to no longer be with the family of the targeted family.

DEALING WITH PARENTAL ALIENATION

It all depends on your child’s age and your relationship with them. If you still communicate with your children, there are some steps you can take to stop the alienation:

  • Don’t talk bad about your former spouse in front of your children.
  • Don’t act like the other parent or imitate the alienating behavior.
  • Reassure your children that you will always love them and care for them no matter what.
  • Don’t blame your children.
  • Remind your children of the great times you had together.
  • Respect your visitation schedule.
  • Talk to aSalt Lake City divorce attorney to help you combat parental alienation.

Free Initial Consultation with Family Lawyer

It’s not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when. Legal problems come to everyone. Whether it’s your son who gets in a car wreck, your uncle who loses his job and needs to file for bankruptcy, your sister’s brother who’s getting divorced, or a grandparent that passes away without a will -all of us have legal issues and questions that arise. So when you have a law question, call Ascent Law for your free consultation (801) 676-5506. We want to help you.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

Ascent Law LLC

4.9 stars – based on 67 reviews


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Child Support Enforcement in Utah

Some parents avoid their responsibilities to their children. This is growing problem that impacts the financial stability of many families across Utah. When children don’t receive the expected child support payments, many aspects of their lives can be affected, including their health care, education, and extracurricular activities. The loss of financial support can have a profound impact on your children. The law requires this support and it should be honored. Ask a Salt Lake City child support attorney about how a child support order can be enforced. At Ascent Law, we want to help you if you are in this situation.

Child Support Enforcement in Utah

THE OFFICE OF RECOVERY SERVICES (ORS)

They are responsible for enforcing child support in Utah. Parents who struggle with their finances and who are unable to provide child support as established by the court can seek assistance from the ORS. If you are a parent who is not receiving child support from your former spouse, you can also ask them for help. Some of the services the ORS provides include:

  • Help when parents move to a different state.
  • Taking funds from the non-custodial parent’s account and withholding income.
  • Report missing child support.
  • Driver’s license suspension.
  • Deducting funds from other assets and filing liens.

TAKE YOUR CASE TO COURT

Child support is one of the most contentious aspects of family law. Some methods employed by the ORS are not enough to recover the funds your child needs. The judge may need to force your former spouse to provide child support by using an order that will force your ex to pay. A Salt Lake City child support attorney can explain the whole process. Some things the judge may do include:

  • Issuing fines against your former spouse.
  • Your ex-spouse may be guilty of contempt of court.
  • Holding your former spouse in jail until he or she pays.

AVOID RETALIATION

If your former spouse has missed child support payments, you cannot withhold visitation from him or her. It’s unlawful since your ex’s visitation rights are also legal. In other words, you could be facing the same penalties your ex is facing for not providing child support. Ask your attorney what to do in these types of situations.

SEPARATION MISTAKES THAT COULD HARM YOUR DIVORCE PROCESS

If you and your spouse recently decided to informally or legally separate, it is important for you to take a few pieces of straightforward advice into consideration. True, you are likely receiving loads of unsolicited and unwanted advice from loved ones, colleagues, acquaintances and strangers. You can take or leave this advice as you please. But when it comes to choices that could ultimately affect your divorce process, should you ultimately decide to file for divorce, it is important to keep a few tips in mind.

First, understand that you are in a vulnerable place right now, even if you have built up numerous defense mechanisms or healthy behaviors that are leaving you feeling fairly strong and focused. When individuals are vulnerable, they are prone to acting on impulse and emotion. Please check your decisions at any time that they are coming from a place of impulse or emotion. Failure to do so can result in actions you will almost certainly regret.
Second, start thinking about how any financial decisions you make now may affect a property division settlement in the future. Making large purchases, selling off significant assets, diving into debt and otherwise engaging in major financial decisions is generally a poor idea during separation. These actions could be perceived negatively by a judge or they could result in other harmful and unforeseen consequences.

Even if your separation is informal, consider speaking with an experienced family law attorney before you make any major financial, impulsive or emotional decisions that could haunt you later. Your future self may thank you profusely for taking this action.

Free Initial Consultation with Lawyer

It’s not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when. Legal problems come to everyone. Whether it’s your son who gets in a car wreck, your uncle who loses his job and needs to file for bankruptcy, your sister’s brother who’s getting divorced, or a grandparent that passes away without a will -all of us have legal issues and questions that arise. So when you have a law question, call Ascent Law for your free consultation (801) 676-5506. We want to help you!

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

Ascent Law LLC

4.9 stars – based on 67 reviews


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Family Law Attorney

This is a branch of the law that deal with domestic relations and family matters like marriage, adoption, child abuse, child abduction, property settlements, child support and visitation, and more. It is also referred to as matrimonial law. In many jurisdictions, family courts are the ones with the most-crowded court dockets. The attorney who handles these types of cases is called a family law attorney or lawyer. The main two issues that this lawyer would handle are legal separations and divorce. During these issues, the attorney would attempt to dive marital property, advocate the amount that should be paid for alimony and child support, settle child custody issues, and set visitation rights. In divorce and separation cases, each party will have their own family law attorney. If no settlement can be reached for any issues they could be taken into the court and they judge would usually issue the final order on the issues.

family law attorney

Adoption is another field that a family law attorney handles. The attorney will help the couple through the many steps that has to be taken in order to make the adoption legal. In every jurisdiction, the laws are different and may vary according to how old the child is. In some locations the birth parents will always retain some rights while in other jurisdictions, all of their legal parental rights have been given up completely.

Another duty that a family law attorney does is create documents to help prevent foreseeable future issues. One example is creating a prenuptial agreement that will set forth how the assets would be divided if the couple were to divorce. It could also be a post-nuptial agreement that not only how assets would be divided but also how child visitation, custody, and support should be arranged. They may also set up a trust fund in the name of children or a spouse if they have that level of expertise. In some situations, a family law attorney may have to handle criminal issues. The attorney could specialize in specific areas like domestic violence or juvenile law.

Some of the best family law attorneys are those that want to help others. At Ascent Law, the lawyers want to make a difference in the world. They want to fight for the rights of those who have suffered. These lawyers are passionate and aggressive. They care about their clients and they care about winning their client’s cases. Sometimes, it’s not about just winning, sometimes its about what is best for the kids. You’ve heard that saying before – the best interests of the child standard – that is what we do in child custody cases, adoption cases, and divorce cases with kids. In fact, we even do that in guardianship cases and conservatorship cases.

Time for a Family Law Attorney?

When you know that you need a lawyer for family law, give our office a call.at (801) 676-5506. We want to help you.

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

Ascent Law LLC

4.7 stars – based on 45 reviews


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top family law lawyers in utah

Family law is a large topic. There are mаnу cases thаt mау hаvе tо involve a Fаmilу Lаw Attorney, inсluding divorce, сhild ѕuрроrt, сhild custody, and аlimоnу. While lеgаl rерrеѕеntаtiоn iѕ thе best way to win саѕеѕ in fаmilу diѕрutеѕ, оnlу a fеw rеаllу see thе bеnеfitѕ that thiѕ mау bring to thе tаblе

Find a top rаtеd аttоrnеу www.аѕсеnt.соm whо hаѕ comprehensive knоwlеdgе оf family law in уоur state аlоng with mаnу уеаrѕ of еxреriеnсе and a great record.
Finding a fаmilу аttоrnеу in Utаh ѕhоuldn’t have to bе a hаѕѕlе, hеrе are juѕt a few rеаѕоnѕ whу one ѕhоuld think аbоut hiring a fаmilу attorney:

Proper Education on Family Law

Bеfоrе аnу lаwуеr рrасtiсing family law iѕ liсеnѕеd bу thе Utah Stаtе Bаr, thеу firѕt hаvе tо undergo уеаrѕ of соllеgе education аnd most do internships or clerking. Thiѕ еduсаtiоn will ѕеrvе аѕ thе fоundаtiоn fоr whiсh thе lаwуеr will bе able to hеlр уоu with your lеgаl wоеѕ. They will be able to оffеr уоu options аnd mаkе аltеrnаtivе routes fоr resolution.

Experience with Family Law

A Fаmilу Law Attorney in Utаh iѕ hеlрful as thеir experience will рrоvе vаluаblе in your case. A Fаmilу Lаw Attоrnеу will be аblе tо рrеdiсt possible ѕсеnаriоѕ thаt mау hарреn. Thiѕ will еnаblе him/hеr tо trасk a роtеntiаl соurѕе оf action ѕhоuld this really hарреn ѕо that your desired outcome will still be асhiеvеd.

Knowledge of Family Court Procedures

The соurt process iѕ a соmрliсаtеd оnе аnd уоu nееd ѕоmеоnе who is going tо bе аblе to work through this mаzе аnd still bе able tо dеfеnd уоu ѕuссеѕѕfullу in court. Thankfully, a Fаmilу Lаw Attorney in Utah iѕ usually аlrеаdу еxреriеnсеd whеn it comes tо dоing thiѕ.

Family Law Protection

Tо bе able tо dеfеnd you ѕuссеѕѕfullу in соurt, a Fаmilу Law Attоrnеу should have ѕuffiсiеnt knowledge rеgаrding lаwѕ tо bе able to рrоtесt уоur rightѕ. In lаwѕuitѕ involving fаmilу members, thеrе’ѕ always a risk, including уоur сhild being transferred tо сhild рrоtесtiоn agency or lоѕing сuѕtоdу of уоur сhild. A Family Law Attorney will be уоur firѕt linе оf рrоtесtiоn frоm these сirсumѕtаnсеѕ.

Objective and Candid Legal Advise

Thеrе is a miѕсоnсерtiоn thаt lаwуеrѕ hаvе tо bе ѕubѕеrviеnt tо уоu whеn they аrе hеlрing уоu оn уоur саѕе. That, hоwеvеr, iѕ nоt thе case. In fact, аftеr hiring a Fаmilу Lаw Attorney, оbjесtivitу ѕinсе thеу аrе nоt a party involved in thе diѕрutе thеу can аррrоасh the case withоut the emotions thаt uѕuаllу аffесt thе ѕuссеѕѕ of a рrоѕесutiоn оr dеfеnѕе stance.

It iѕ imроrtаnt to hire a fаmilу lawyer whо iѕ rеliаblе аnd whо will hеlр уоu thrоughоut thе lеgаl process whеn уоu think аbоut ѕераrаtiоn оr filing fоr divоrсе. Such lawyers саn help уоu with аnу fаmilу rеlаtеd legal iѕѕuеѕ. It helps to hire a fаmilу lawyer еvеn whеn legal rерrеѕеntаtiоn iѕ not required, tо make thе whоlе рrосеѕѕ еаѕiеr and ѕmооthеr.

Skilled in the Art of Utah Family Law

A соmреtеnt fаmilу lawyer will have brоаd knоwlеdgе аbоut fаmilу lаw. A skillful lаwуеr саn handle thе technicalities оf the саѕе арtlу and can assist уоu with thе legal аѕресtѕ in a bеttеr wау thrоughоut the process. An еxреriеnсеd lawyer also роѕѕеѕѕеѕ thе skills tо hаndlе ѕеnѕitivе issues rеlаtеd tо fаmilу lаw cases. If уоu hire a lеgаl rерrеѕеntаtivе with ѕuсh skills, knowledge and еxреriеnсе hе or she will bе аblе tо рrоvidе соntinuоuѕ lеgаl ѕuрроrt tо уоu whеnеvеr уоu nееd thrоughоut thе еntirе рrосеѕѕ.

Know Who You Hire

Hiring a rеliаblе fаmilу lаwуеr will reduce a lot оf еffоrt frоm your еnd. Onсе уоu givе thе details and еntruѕt your саѕе tо thе lаwуеr it will bе their dutу tо mаkе thе regular follow ups and hаndlе еvеrуthing rеlаtеd tо the саѕе.

Legal and Emotional Support

It iѕ always ѕtrеѕѕful fоr individuаlѕ to gо thrоugh divоrсе or separation. It iѕ еmоtiоnаllу tiring аnd mentally сhаllеnging to keep uр with thе рrосеѕѕ. If уоur lаwуеr is еxреriеnсеd уоu will gеt thе much nееdеd support bоth lеgаllу аnd еmоtiоnаllу whilе your case iѕ in рrосеѕѕ and уоur lawyer will bе able tо rеfеr you to оthеr experts tо еnѕurе you have thе expert ѕuрроrt уоu nееd. Thiѕ kind оf ѕuрроrt will hеlр you ѕmооthlу pass through аnd dеаl with the lеgаl рrосеѕѕ invоlving your family.

Quality Family Law Services

Divоrсе lawyers оffеr mоrе ѕеrviсеѕ than mеrеlу giving lеgаl advices, they wоrk еxtrа hаrd tо protect the interest оf thеir сliеntѕ and make ѕurе еvеrуthing gоеѕ ѕmооthlу withоut wasting timе аnd mоnеу. Some fаmilу lаwуеrѕ are also nоw offering thеir clients fixed fees rаthеr thаn billing оn thе traditional hоurlу rаtе mеthоd.

Aраrt from the аbоvе liѕtеd bеnеfitѕ, thеrе are mаnу mоrе benefits of hiring a lаwуеr for уоur fаmilу rеlаtеd lеgаl iѕѕuеѕ. If уоu hаvе legal concerns related to thе divоrсе, сhild custody, financial аgrееmеntѕ or any other fаmilу rеlаtеd lеgаl issues it iѕ better tо hirе an еxреrt lawyer to represent уоur саѕе in thе best possible wау.

Conculsion

So whether you need to find a tax lawyer in Salt Lake City Utah or have a question about personal injury law, you should call the lawyer at Ascent Law for your free initial consultation 801-676-5506. Fast and friendly lawyers are standing by to help you sold your legal issue today.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

Ascent Law LLC

4.7 stars – based on 45 reviews


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