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Is out-of-state court decision relevant to Utah divorce cases?

Despite the wide range of issues that have been litigated before in state supreme courts, there are still a wide range of issues that have not been addressed. When such an issue arises in a Utah divorce, it may be useful to look at other nearby states, to see if justices have ruled on an issue similar to the one that is currently being litigated. When a favorable decision can be found, this may allow an argument to be made that a Utah judge should take into consideration what their colleagues in other states have already ruled on.

A recent out-of-state decision may assist those dealing with military pension issues. The court found that a husband was not required to share the increase in his pension that he received when he changed jobs. The man, who prior to the marriage, was a member of the Air Force, was allowed to purchase credits when he became a firefighter that increased the value of his pension.

His ex-wife argued that since the man purchased the credits with joint funds that she should be entitled to a share of the increase. However, the California court disagreed. In their order, the justices stated that the woman was only entitled to fifty percent of the money that was spent to purchase the credits, which amounted to around $6,700.

Going through a contested divorce in a Utah court can be a difficult and stressful process. However, by carefully planning how the case will be litigated and by conducting the proper in and out-of-state research, an individual will be able to make the best argument possible. If properly prepared, this can result in a favorable decision being issued, which can assist both parties moving forward as they try and start their new life.

Source: news10.net, "Calif. Supreme Court rules on divorce pension issue," June 25, 2013

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