The appellate court reiterated that rule in Utah that a party need not provide documentation to substantiate every part of his or her financial declaration and/or needs. This court has disavowed the notion that “standard of living is determined by actual expenses alone.” Howell v. Howell, 806 P.2d 1209, 1212 (Utah Ct. App. 1991). The appellate court also reiterated that people often reduce their expenses during a divorce because of lack of income, but the court should look at the necessary expenses at the time of separation (meaning during the marriage). It is thus incumbent upon the district court to determine the amount necessary to maintain the standard of living established over the course of the marriage rather than the amount that is actually being spent at the time of trial. See id.; see also Farnsworth v. Farnsworth, 2012 UT App 282, ¶ 15, 288 P.3d 298.
Matt Wadsworth is a partner at Arnold & Wadsworth. He practices in Salt Lake City and Ogden. As a member of the Utah Bar for five years, he has extensive experience in family law related matters as well as general civil litigation.