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Tag: cost

Important things divorce attorney clients need to know but would easily and freely be forgiven for not knowing without being told. No. 5:

Help me help you, will you? The cost of a divorce attorney’s representation in Utah is simply and obviously far too high for most people. We’re talking bankruptcy or near-bankruptcy levels. Does anyone out there know how to obtain the value of a good attorney’s services without either the client or the attorney being short-changed in the bargain?

Utah Family Law, LC | divorceutah.com | 801-466-9277

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How much does it cost to file for a divorce?

How much does it cost to file for a divorce?

Good question. There are costs and then there are cost for filing for divorce.

Beyond what an attorney would charge you for his/her services, there are other costs to be paid when obtaining a divorce, one of which is the filing fee the court charges you. Here’s a list of what it costs to file for divorce in every state of the U.S.A. as of July 21, 2021, according to Findlaw.com (https://www.findlaw.com/family/divorce/how-much-does-a-divorce-cost-by-state.html):

Alabama $400 ($50 administrative fee included) Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $10,000

Alaska $250 (additional $75 fee to file a modification for child custody, visitation, or support, or for spousal maintenance or property division) Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $10,000+

Arizona $280 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $10,000+

Arkansas $165 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $8,000+

California $435 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $14,000

Colorado $230 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $11,000+

Connecticut $360 (excluding paternity legal action) Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $12,000+

Delaware $165 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $12,000+

District of Columbia (Washington D.C.) $80 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $10,000

Florida $409 (Cost changes per county. Example from Duval County Circuit.) Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $10,000+

Georgia $400 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $11,000+

Hawaii $215 (without minor children), $265 (with minor children) Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $9,000+

Idaho $154 (without minor children), $207 (with minor children) Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $8,000+

Illinois $334 (District specific fees. This example is from Lake County Circuit.) Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $10,000+

Indiana $157 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $9,000

Iowa $185 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $9,000+

Kansas $400 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $8,000+

Kentucky $148 (without an attorney), $153 (with an attorney) Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $8,000+

Louisiana $150 to $250 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $10,000

Maine $120 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $8,000+

Maryland $165 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $11,000

Massachusetts $200 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $12,000+

Michigan $175 (without minor children), $255 (with minor children) (District specific fees. This example is from Wayne County Circuit.) Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $10,000+

Minnesota $365 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $9,000

Mississippi $400 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees:: $8,000+

Missouri $133.50 (without minor children), $233.50 (with minor children) (District specific fees. This example is from Jefferson County Circuit.) Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $10,000+

Montana $170 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $6,000+

Nebraska $158 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $8,000+

Nevada $217 (first appearance), $299 (joint petition) Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $10,000+

New Hampshire $400 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $9,000+

New Jersey $300 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $12,000+

New Mexico $137 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $6,500+

New York $335 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $13,500+

North Carolina $75 (absolute divorce), $150 (for civil cases in district court) Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $10,000+

North Dakota $80 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $8,000+

Ohio $350 (District specific fees. This example is from Washington County Circuit.) Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $9,000+

Oklahoma $183 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $9,000+

Oregon $301 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $10,000

Pennsylvania $201.75 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $11,000+

Puerto Rico $400 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $10,000

Rhode Island $400 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $10,000+

South Carolina $150 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $10,000

South Dakota $95 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $8,500+

Tennessee $184.50 (without minor children), $259.50 (with minor children) Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $9,500+

Texas $300 (depending on child support or custody factors) Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $12,500

Utah $325 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $10,400

Vermont $90 (if you are a resident of the state), $295 (without a stipulation) Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $9,000

Virginia Use this calculator to find your district’s fees. Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $11,500

Washington $314 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $10,000+

West Virginia $134 Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $8,000+

Wisconsin $184.50 (with no child support or alimony), $194.50 (with child support or alimony) Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $8,500+

Wyoming $85 (District specific fees. This example is from Laramie County Circuit.) Average Other Divorce Costs and Attorney Fees: $9,000

Utah Family Law, LC | divorceutah.com | 801-466-9277

https://www.quora.com/How-much-does-it-cost-to-file-for-a-divorce/answer/Eric-Johnson-311

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Putting my money where my mouth is: I now offer half-day mediation services free of charge. No strings attached.

Putting my money where my mouth is: I now offer half-day mediation services free of charge. No strings attached.
Divorce litigation almost always costs too much. Divorce mediation is now getting out of control too.
 
I cannot offer unlimited free mediation sessions, but I offer one slot per week. You don’t have to be poor to qualify. Anyone can request my free divorce mediation services. 
In person or over Zoom (or Skype, Google Meet, or Microsoft Teams), I can accommodate you.
 
If you or someone you know who needs or wants to mediate, you can book a half-day mediation (either 8 to noon or 1 to 4) with me on a first come, first-served basis. 801-466-9277. Or to book by e-mail, send your message to my legal assistant, Brian: brian@divorceutah.com.

Utah Family Law, LC | divorceutah.com | 801-466-9277

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How much does a collaborative divorce cost?

How much does a collaborative divorce cost?

Too much, generally. Odds are that if you attempt to settle your divorce through what is called the “collaborative law” process your experience will be a negative one and/or one that cost you far more in time and money and effort than it should have.

Truly collaborative divorce is, in practice, a sham more often than not.

Most collaborative lawyers are all hat and no cattle, selling the sizzle and not a steak. With rare exception, most attorneys who call themselves “collaborative lawyers” do so for the sole purpose of exploiting what they believe to be a lucrative trend, not to be real collaborators.

Forewarned is forearmed.

Collaborative divorce is one of those things that sounds great in concept but doesn’t translate to real world success. Even the most enthusiastic and vocal (and honest) proponents of collaborative divorce will tell you this (please read on to find out who and why).

I was recently asked why collaborative law is not utilized more in divorce cases, and while I had my own ideas for how to answer the question, I wanted to refer to someone with more expertise and a greater understanding of the subject than I do, to make sure that I did not misstate 1) the correct definition of collaborative law; and 2) did not misstate the strengths and weaknesses of collaborative law as it is practiced in the real world today.

As I searched the web for such an article, I found a few that summarized what I was thinking, but I still felt did not accurately describe what real collaborative law is or why collaborative law practice so often fails to be practiced correctly. I knew that I still did not myself have a correct definition or correct understanding of collaborative law.

Then I came across ‘Collaborative Divorce’ Is Collaborative in Name Only. The author of this article, Mark Baer, hit the nail on the head when you said that what many people describe as “collaborative law” is in fact “cooperative law”.

The article laments “a collaborative law community that seems more intent on patting itself on the back and devising a way for all of us to make more money than in really helping our clients.” Again, it hits the nail squarely on the head.

Human nature being what it is, most people won’t exercise the patience or take the leap of faith needed for collaborative law to function properly. That’s a shame, but Mr. Baer’s article neatly summarizes why this is.

The real power of collaborative law practice, ADR, mediation, etc. is wasted and/or never realized when people don’t understand that the real power lies in mutual benefit as the goal. While mediation may still be better than litigation, if the main benefits are compromise obtained through conflict avoidance, the disputants “left money on the table” both literally and figuratively (i.e., emotionally and spiritually).

Utah Family Law, LC | divorceutah.com | 801-466-9277

https://www.quora.com/How-much-does-a-collaborative-divorce-cost/answer/Eric-Johnson-311

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Why aren’t a last will and testament mandated by law?

Because everything the government must mandate by law the government must administer, and that necessitates spending money to create and maintain bureaucracies, and that necessitates imposing taxes, and that necessitates angering voters needlessly.

Nobody likes the government telling them to spend money on things they don’t want. If you don’t want a last will and testament, but the government were to require you to have one, then you’d either have to go to (and pay) a lawyer to help you prepare one or go to LegalZoom and pay money for something that you don’t want and that you will likely make such a mess of it that it’s more trouble than it’s worth at best and does you more harm than good at worst.

How would you administer such a law? Would you require everyone to have a last will and testament at birth? Upon reaching the age of 18 question mark upon marriage? Divorce? Retirement? And how would you know who is and is not complying with the law? Would you have to file a copy of your last will and testament with your tax return every year?

Once the government requires you to have a last will and testament, then it’s up to you to make necessary changes to your will as changes arise in your life. One more thing the government requires you to do that you don’t really need to do and may not want to do.

Over time we’ve come up with a better way to deal with decedent’s estate than mandating that every person have a last will and testament. We have instead what are known as intestate succession laws. If you die without a will, the law determines automatically to whom your property goes. This is far more fair, more efficient and more pervasive and effective than a law that requires everyone to have a last will and testament.

Utah Family Law, LC | divorceutah.com | 801-466-9277

https://www.quora.com/Why-arent-a-last-will-and-testament-mandated-by-law/answer/Eric-Johnson-311

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Can I Recover the Engagement Ring (or what I paid for it), If Either of Us Breaks Off the Engagement?

Can I recover the engagement ring (or what I paid for it), if my fiance or I break(s) it off?
Can I get the engagement ring back, if one of us breaks it off?

It is possible in Utah.

In Hess v. Johnston163 P.3d 747 (Utah Ct.App. 2007), the Utah Court of Appeals discussed whether a person may recover engagement gifts under the theory of “conditional gift.” The Court noted, as one would expect, that not all gifts given during a period of engagement are conditional. Id.  The Court adopted the language from the Iowa Appellate Court in stating that “one asserting the delivery [of a gift] was made on some condition . . . has the burden of establishing such condition” as an element of recovery under a conditional gift theory. Id.see Fierro v. Hoel, 465 N.W.2d 669, 671 (Iowa Ct. App. 1990).  The court in Fierro held that “[a]n engagement  ring given in contemplation of marriage is an impliedly conditional gift.”  See also, Heiman v. Parrish, 262 Kan. 926, 942 P.2d 631, 634 (Kan. 1997) (“Once it is established the ring is an engagement ring, it is a conditional gift”).

The case law establishes that whether a gift is conditional or absolute is a question of the donor’s intent, to be determined from any express declaration by the donor at the time of the making of the gift or from the circumstances.” Hess v. Johnston, supra; 38 Am Jur 2d Gifts Section 72 (2015) (emphasis added). Generally the donee has the burden of proving a gift. See Mace v. Tingey, 149 P.2d 832, 834 (Utah 1944).

Importantly, case law has adopted the notion that the nature of the gifts sometimes give rise to an inference that they were inherently conditional.   A number of jurisdictions have recognized that gifts, like engagement rings, carry with them an implied condition of marriage due to the inherent symbolism of the gift. See, e.g.Fierro, supra, 465 N.W. 2d at 671 (“The inherent symbolism of [an engagement ring] forecloses the need to establish an express condition that marriage will ensue.”); Heiman v. Parrish, (“[E]ngagement rings should be considered, by their very nature, conditional gifts given in contemplation of marriage.”); see also Restatement of Restitution, Section 58 cmt. c (noting that a donor may be entitled to restitution “if the gift is an engagement ring, a family heirloom or some other thing intimately connected with the marriage”).

In addition to a right to recover the ring or the value thereof under the theory of conditional gift, one could also argue entitlement to recover based upon unjust enrichment and promissory estoppel.  To succeed under a claim of unjust enrichment, a plaintiff must allege facts supporting three elements: “(1) a benefit conferred on one person by another; (2) an appreciation or knowledge by the conferee of the benefit; and (3) the acceptance or retention of the benefit under such circumstances as to make it inequitable for the conferee to retain the benefit without payment of its value.” Jeffs v. Stubbs, 970 P.2d 1234, 1248 (Utah 1988). 

Similarly, the elements of promissory estoppel in Utah are (1) The [promisee] acted with prudence and in reasonable reliance on a promise made by the [promisor]; (2) the [promisor] knew that the [promisee] had relied on the promise which the [promisor] should reasonably expect to induce action or forbearance on the part of the [promisee] or a third person; (3) the [promisor] was aware of all material facts; and (4) the [promisee] relied on the promise and the reliance resulted in a loss to the [promisee].”  Nunley v. Westates Casing Serv., Inc., 1999 Utah 100 (quoting Skanchy v. Calcados Ortope S.A., 952 P.2d 1071, 1077 (Utah 1998). 

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How old do I have to be and how much does it cost to legally change my name?

How old do I have to be and how much does it cost to legally change my name?

In Utah, where I practice, you can have your name changed at any age, but if you are not an adult, you need your parent or guardian’s permission to change your name.

The cost of the filing fee to file a petition for name change with the court is, as of this writing, $360.

If you are divorcing you can ask the court to change your name as part of the divorce action (and you aren’t limited to changing your name to your maiden name only–you could choose a name you’ve never had before, as long as you don’t choose a name that is bizarre, unduly lengthy, ridiculous, or offensive to common decency and good taste, and as long as you’re not seeking a name change to avoid creditors, fines, or sentences in criminal actions, for an unworthy motive, or to commit fraud), without having to file a separate court action or having to pay a separate filing fee.

The laws in Utah governing a name change are found here: Utah Code Title 42, Chapter 1

Utah Family Law, LC | divorceutah.com | 801-466-9277

https://www.quora.com/Can-I-choose-what-high-school-to-go-as-a-16-year-old-without-my-parents-consent

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