Title 30 Chapter 3 Section 11.3

Husband and Wife
Divorce
Section 11.3
Mandatory educational course for divorcing parents -- Purpose -- Curriculum -- Exceptions.

            

30-3-11.3.   Mandatory educational course for divorcing parents -- Purpose -- Curriculum -- Exceptions.

            (1) The Judicial Council shall approve and implement a mandatory course for divorcing parents in all judicial districts. The mandatory course is designed to educate and sensitize divorcing parties to their children's needs both during and after the divorce process.

            (2) The Judicial Council shall adopt rules to implement and administer this program.

            (3) As a prerequisite to receiving a divorce decree, both parties are required to attend a mandatory course on their children's needs after filing a complaint for divorce and receiving a docket number, unless waived under Section 30-3-4. If that requirement is waived, the court may permit the divorce action to proceed.

            (4) The court may require unmarried parents to attend this educational course when those parents are involved in a visitation or custody proceeding before the court.

            (5) The mandatory course shall instruct both parties:

            (a) about divorce and its impacts on:

            (i) their child or children;

            (ii) their family relationship; and

            (iii) their financial responsibilities for their child or children; and

            (b) that domestic violence has a harmful effect on children and family relationships.

            (6) The Administrative Office of the Courts shall administer the course pursuant to Title 63G, Chapter 6a, Utah Procurement Code, through private or public contracts and organize the program in each of Utah's judicial districts. The contracts shall provide for the recoupment of administrative expenses through the costs charged to individual parties, pursuant to Subsection (8).

            (7) A certificate of completion constitutes evidence to the court of course completion by the parties.

            (8) (a) Each party shall pay the costs of the course to the independent contractor providing the course at the time and place of the course. A fee of $8 shall be collected, as part of the course fee paid by each participant, and deposited in the Children's Legal Defense Account, described in Section 51-9-408.

            (b) Each party who is unable to pay the costs of the course may attend the course without payment upon a prima facie showing of impecuniosity as evidenced by an affidavit of impecuniosity filed in the district court. In those situations, the independent contractor shall be reimbursed for its costs from the appropriation to the Administrative Office of the Courts for "Mandatory Educational Course for Divorcing Parents Program." Before a decree of divorce may be entered, the court shall make a final review and determination of impecuniosity and may order the payment of the costs if so determined.

            (9) Appropriations from the General Fund to the Administrative Office of the Courts for the "Mandatory Educational Course for Divorcing Parents Program" shall be used to pay the costs of an indigent parent who makes a showing as provided in Subsection (8)(b).

            (10) The Administrative Office of the Courts shall adopt a program to evaluate the effectiveness of the mandatory educational course. Progress reports shall be provided if requested by the Judiciary Interim Committee.


Amended by Chapter 347, 2012 General Session