If You Choose to Divorce

Make a Safety Plan for You and the Children

  • If you are in danger, call the Women’s Shelter for Women and Children (801-377-5500).
  • Are your children in danger?  Do they know who to call in an emergency or where to run for help?  Go to Child’s Safety Plan.

Keep Records

  • Keep a journal of abuse. Use a spiral notebook or any bound book that pages cannot be inserted into, and write details.  Include dates and times. It can be used in court for evidence.  Keep it hidden.

Get Legal Help

  • For information on finding legal help in Utah,  go to www.youtube.com/user/utahstatecourts. They have free information; listen to the film clip.
  • Get temporary custody of the children. You can go to the Provo 4th District Court (125 North 100 West, Provo) on the 2nd and 4th Tuesday from 1 -3 p.m. and get free legal advice. Before going, go to www.ut.courts.gov and get the online documentation. Fill it out and take it with you.
  • You can also go to Utah Legal Services (455 North University # 100, Provo) or call 801-374-2766. You will do a short intake interview and then talk to a legal person.  They have help for all kinds of legal problems. They will need your name, birth date, monthly income, how many people that income supports, your assets, race and gender.
  • Ask friends for suggestions for lawyers if you can afford one.
  • ChainBreaker volunteers may be able to help give suggestions.
  • Do not represent yourself.
  • You may also contact the victim’s advocate in your city for help. They cannot give you legal advice, but they have legal experience so they can give suggestions and steer you in the right direction.
  • For help working with a lawyer, go to How to Choose a Lawyer.

Prepare Financially

  • Get copies of tax forms, bank statements, paycheck stubs, and mortgages; put them in a safe place, probably not in the home.
  • Put money aside to help you.
  • Ask family if they can help in any way.
  • Go to jobs.utah.gov to find information about food stamps, child care, medical and financial help. You can fill out the forms and take them with you for the interview.
  • Community Action Food Bank for low income families (801-377-8200) can help with deposits and 1st month’s rent if you can prove you can take care of it after that. They have emergency car repair help, bus tokens, gasoline and household items. They also have free classes and seminars to help you become self-reliant and empowered. (Wed. 6-7:30 and Saturday 9-10:30 a.m.) Call before going.
  • If you need help with rent, get on the Housing Authority List. The Housing Authority of Utah County is located at 240 E. Center, Provo, 801-373-8333. The Provo City Housing Authority is located at 650 W. 100 N, Provo, 801-852-7080.
  • For utilities help, go to http://housing.utah.gov/seal.
  • WIC can help you learn about nutrition and can provide healthy foods for you if you are pregnant or nursing and for your children that are under 5. Go to www.health.utah.gov/wic or call 1-877-wic-kids.
  • Advocates may have access to emergency victim funds.
  • If you need medical help, go to Mountainlands Family Health Center: 589 S. State, Provo, 801-429-2001, or 910 E. 100 N. Suite 151, Payson, 801-465-1891. You can also go to www.mountainlands.org

Work

  • Get help from Job Workforce Services at jobs.utah.gov.
  • LDS Employment Center has classes for interviewing, resumes and a lot of support.
  • If you need clothing for work, ChainBreakers has some clothing you can see at the building Tuesday nights from 6 to 7 p.m. before class. UVU Turning Point Women’s Resource Center (801-863-8080) has clothing (801-863-7580 for appointment) and other classes you can take.

Get a Protective Order

  • You can do this by calling the victim’s advocate in your city; they can help you and give you other advice.  Every city has an advocate; you can call the police station or the court house to find out who it is.  Advocates are not required to report anything except child abuse so it is easy to talk to them.
  • Alpine- Kathy 801-368-7122
  • American Fork- Dawna 801-763-3020
  • Orem- RaNae 801-229-7128
  • Pleasant Grove- Rochelle 801-404-6073

Get Counseling for You and your Children

  • If you have insurance, check your provider list.
  • Check with clergy.
  • Call Family Support and Treatment Center (1255 North 1200 West, Orem) at 801-229-1181. You need to make an appointment for an intake interview. All services are charged according to your income. They have play therapy for the children and counseling for adults. They have babysitting while you get counseling. Children under 8 do well with play therapy. They have parenting classes also. They have a respite nursery, a place to drop off your children if you are in distress or can’t care for them. (This is a time to cool off instead of harming your children.)
  • Advocates may be able to qualify you for Crime Victims Reparations, a state program that pays for therapy for you and your children.
  • Call UVU Turning  Point at 801-863-8080. They have a Successful Life Management Class and a WISP Program to help with school if you decide you want to go to school.

Take Care of Yourself

  • Read self-help books. For a list of recommended reading, go to Good Books. The Utah Domestic Violence Council Website, UVDC.org, has a list of books, too. They also have a free online course about domestic violence.
  • Attend classes.
  • Take time to enjoy your children.
  • Take time to relax and have fun.