Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Transitional Alimony Can be Reviewed without a Showing of Change in Circumstances

Beal v. Beal, 2013 UT App 105 Utah Court of Appeals April 25, 2013

Parties were divorced in 2007 and wife was awarded transitional alimony and a review date was set for the issue of alimony.  At the time of review, Wife failed to produce various documents, namely a trust of which she was the beneficiary.  At the first hearing, the Court was unable to determine what the appropriate ongoing alimony amount should be, if any.

At the second hearing, Wife did not appear and the hearing was again continued.  Wife finally produced a copy of the trust, but did not produce the accounting.  At the third hearing, the trial court noted discrepancies between wifes testimony and her financial declaration and ended the transitional alimony.

Wife appealed and argued that there was no basis to change the alimony because there was no substantial change of circumstance since the decree.  The Court of Appeals found that an award of transitional alimony is intended to be temporary, particularly when the Court sets a hearing to review the alimony award.  Therefore, the court could modify without a substantial change in circumstance and the modification was appropriate because of Wifes failure to comply with reasonable discovery requests. Affirmed.

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