I received the following plea for help from one reader.
"I have always been a stay at home mom and house wife. Then my husband left me a year ago for another woman. I have custody of our little boy but the child support I receive is not enough to pay all our expenses. I take care of our boy during the day but as soon as my ex-husband is off work, he comes to get him and I don't see him again until bedtime. I have told my ex that I need to get a day job but he refuses to change the visitation agreement so that I can get a day job and still have quality time with my son."
I have to admit that this seems to be a common theme in Utah since there are so many stay at home mothers that suddenly find themselves having to become the bread winners in their own home. I'll preface my advice in regards to this situation with a small disclaimer. I am not an attorney and can not predict how officers in a court will rule on your case.
With that said, I cannot imagine any court ruling in favor of a parent that monopolizes all of a child's time without giving the other parent (especially the custodial parent) an equal amount of quality time with their children. If you are able to find a job, write out a statement to your ex proposing a reasonable visitation schedule that you should both be able to agree to. If an agreement can not be made, most states provide a standard visitation schedule that they will default to in non-agreeable cases. You can find a copy of Utah's visitation schedules at:
Depending on your child's age, you will open Section 35 or 35.5. You may also want to take a look at Sections 32, 34, 36, & 38 just to name a few.
The best advice I can give you is, learn your rights, then stand up for your rights. If you won't fight for the best interests of your children, then who will? If the case does end up going to court, figure out a way to pay for it. Legal fees are astronomically high but time with your child is priceless.