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Utah Family Lawyer on Moving

In situations where court ordered parenting time has been established, and the residential parent wants to move, pursuant to Utah law, the other parent is entitled to notice of the move and, if requested or ordered by the court, a hearing.  These notice provisions apply REGARDLESS of whether the non-residential or non-moving parent contests the move. As a relocation lawyer, I’ve seen parents make mistakes in doing this before, which can require a big problem for them.

Utah Family Lawyer on Moving

A parent has a fundamental right to live where he or she wants to live, BUT they do not have a fundamental right to permanently relocate the child in violation of the Utah Revised Code or the parties’ court order.

Depending on the language of your court order and/or the language in the Local Rules of the court who issued the order, simply moving a certain distance away MAY automatically trigger a change in custody, shared parenting, school placement parent, parenting time or other provisions of  your parenting order.

Utah law, case law and the code  requires a court to consider whether either parent has established a residence, or is planning to establish a residence, outside this state when determining the best interest of the child.

In addition, pursuant to Utah law when determining whether shared parenting is still in the best interest of the child the court must consider,

  • The geographic proximity of the parents to each other, as the proximity relates to the practical considerations of shared parenting;

Utah laws requires a court to consider

  • The geographical location of the residence of each parent and the distance between those residences, and if the person is not a parent, the geographical location of that person’s residence and the distance between that person’s residence and the child’s residence;
  • Whether either parent has established a residence or is planning to establish a residence outside this state;

Sometimes parents want to move for legitimate reasons, and sometimes they want to move to thwart the other parent’s access to the child.  Regardless of the reason for the move, if the move creates additional distance between the child and the other parent, the move IS going to have an impact on the parenting time of the non-moving parent.  The question is, how much of an impact, and does the non-moving parent object?

If the non-moving parent believes that the impact upon their parenting time and relationship with the child is significant, he or she may wish to modify custody, shared parenting, or the school placement parent in a shared parenting plan.  At a minimum, the parties will need to consider whether a new parenting time schedule is appropriate.

Can you sue for a broken heart?

Did you have a change of heart and leave your fiancé at the altar? If so, be glad that you are in Utah where “heart balm actions” have been abolished.  Many years ago there was the Heart Balm Statute, which says that no person shall be liable for civil damages in the following types of cases:

  • breach of a promise to marry
  • alienation of affections
  • criminal conversation

Later cases have generally found that the following types of actions are also abolished under the statute, at least when it relates to civil damages for a failed relationship or a person wronged in a relationship:

  • enticement
  • intentional infliction of emotional distress
  • fraud
  • negligence

Although some states will still allow heart balm actions, Utah does not.  You cannot sue the person who stole your spouse away from you for money damages, and you cannot sue your spouse for money damages in a civil case for cheating on you.  Generally, you cannot successfully sue your fiancé for leaving you at the altar, even if you had already spent a lot of money on the wedding.

Be sure to also take a look at our article about returning the wedding ring after a broken engagement in Utah.

There is no broken heart law in Utah.

Free Consultation with Family Lawyer in Utah

If you have a question about divorce law or if you need to relocate to another state, 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

Ascent Law LLC

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Michael Anderson

About the Author

People who want a lot of Bull go to a Butcher. People who want results navigating a complex legal field go to a Lawyer that they can trust. That’s where I come in. I am Michael Anderson, an Attorney in the Salt Lake area focusing on the needs of the Average Joe wanting a better life for him and his family. I’m the Lawyer you can trust. I grew up in Utah and love it here. I am a Father to three, a Husband to one, and an Entrepreneur. I understand the feelings of joy each of those roles bring, and I understand the feeling of disappointment, fear, and regret when things go wrong. I attended the University of Utah where I received a B.A. degree in 2010 and a J.D. in 2014. I have focused my practice in Wills, Trusts, Real Estate, and Business Law. I love the thrill of helping clients secure their future, leaving a real legacy to their children. Unfortunately when problems arise with families. I also practice Family Law, with a focus on keeping relationships between the soon to be Ex’s civil for the benefit of their children and allowing both to walk away quickly with their heads held high. Before you worry too much about losing everything that you have worked for, before you permit yourself to be bullied by your soon to be ex, before you shed one more tear in silence, call me. I’m the Lawyer you can trust.