Of course, couples don’t enter into marriage or civil unions anticipating a divorce. It is, however, increasingly common. We have all heard the statistics: 50 percent of first marriages, 67 percent of second and roughly 75 percent of third marriages end in divorce or legal separation. (Source: Forest Institute of Professional Psychology.) When your future, your fortune and your family is at stake, it is critical to be prepared, and to protect your interests with a highly competent divorce legal team on your side.

The team at Smoak Law aims to deliver maximum results utilizing our experience in family law, complex financial and property matters, civil litigation and child support and custody arrangements. I have decades of experience identifying and building a compelling case to protect every conceivable situation, resource or asset, including:

  • Assets owned in more than one state
  • Convoluted income streams from numerous sources, including stock options, performance incentive payments, bonuses and award trips, royalties, and capital gains.
  • Valuation of personal and business real estate property, businesses and other assets
  • Fair and Equitable division of tax-deferred retirement accounts: IRAs, 401(k) plans and pensions
  • Fair and Equitable division of stock options and restricted stock
  • Division of patents, copyrights, and other intellectual property
  • True valuation of businesses
  • Division of outstanding debts
  • Treatment of trusts
  • Parenting and custody plans

In any divorce, especially those involving estates of considerable size, the division of property may be complex and vital to the protection of a client’s fortune and family. Smoak Law understands these complexities and utilizes forensic professionals and business valuation experts to determine the real value and character of a client’s assets. Any assets acquired during the course of a marriage may be eligible for equitable distribution.

Asset Tracing

Too often, assets have proven to be concealed by a spouse prior to a divorce. These assets are often very difficult to discover but must be discovered for a fair and equitable division of property during the divorce. If these assets can be discovered, our office will find them. Hiding assets is not just for the wealthy or business owners. Anyone can have a rainy-day account that may not be voluntarily included in divorce documents. At Smoak Law, P.C, sophisticated and thorough asset tracing is a critical step to ensure the transparency of the divorce and the financial stability of a client and children involved.

Marital Property

When two people get divorced, much of what occurs as the parties work towards a final dissolution is set out in the Utah statutes. Utah is an equitable distribution or common law state. Marital property in Utah isn’t automatically assumed to be owned by both spouses and therefore should be divided equally in a divorce.

In Utah, marital property is divided “equitably” or fairly, which may not be an even 50-50. Usually for longer marriages, it is about 50% to each party. For short-term marriages, the court generally puts people back to their position before the marriage, such as giving people what they had before the marriage and typically what they made during the marriage. Parties can agree on how they want to divide the property outside of court, but a judge will review it to ensure it’s fair.

There are of course a number of considerations that judges are required to consider when one party moves for spousal support after a divorce. However, rather than attempt to convince the presiding judge to consider these factors in certain ways yourself, you need to put your best foot forward by securing the help of a Utah spousal support attorney. Call our offices today to schedule an appointment.