Getting a divorce can take a lot of time and money. In a contested matter it is not uncommon for the entire process to take a year or more. Upon learning this, many people ask the following questions:

  1. Who has custody of the children, and what is the other parent’s parent-time schedule in the meantime?
  2. Who will pay the marital bills during this process?
  3. Who gets possession of the marital home?
  4. How can I protect the marital assets?

All these questions can be answered by a Motion for Temporary Orders. Utah Code Ann. 30-3-3 authorizes a Court to enter temporary orders that the parties must follow during the pendency of the divorce or parentage proceedings.

The Utah Courts Website states:

“A temporary order governs child custody, parent-time and support, alimony, property distribution, attorney fees and other matters during divorce or parentage proceedings. The parties must follow the temporary order until it is changed or until final judgment in the case. A Motion for Temporary Order may be filed with or after the petition for divorce or petition to establish parentage.”

“A temporary order is not automatic. You must give the court good reasons for granting your request. If you want the temporary order to govern joint legal or physical custody, you must include a Parenting Plan. If you want the temporary order to govern any financial payments, such as alimony, child support or attorney fees, you must include a Financial Declaration and the appropriate Child Support Worksheets.”

As the State’s site suggests, temporary orders are not a guaranteed thing. The judge will have a hearing and consider all the necessary evidence to determine whether and which temporary orders are warranted. Hearings on temporary orders are referred to as a mini-trial. As such, these hearings can become costly and may establish a status quo that the judge will look at before he enters the final Decree of Divorce. Therefore, it is important to have an experienced family law attorney advise you of what the best course of action is in obtaining temporary orders. Also, it usually makes sense to try and mediate or negotiate stipulated temporary orders before you ask the Court to award temporary orders.

Call 435-656-6156, or visit and schedule your free appointment with an experienced family law attorney today.