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How to File for Divorce in Colorado

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Filing for Divorce in Colorado: Your Ultimate Guide

Initiating the process of divorce is a significant and often daunting decision, notably due to the legal complexities involved. If you’ve found yourself contemplating this path in Colorado, our ultimate guide aims to provide you with the comprehensive information you need. We will explore the necessary steps to file for divorce in Colorado, shed light on the legal requirements, and navigate through the potential challenges that might arise. Armed with this knowledge, you will be better prepared to approach this potentially overwhelming process.

Colorado Divorce Process

The process of filing for divorce in Colorado begins with submitting a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage or Legal Separation to the district court. The petitioner must be a resident of Colorado for at least 91 days prior to filing. Following the submission, the other spouse (the respondent) is served with divorce papers and has 21 days (if they’re in-state) or 35 days (if they’re out-of-state) to respond. If the couple shares minor children, they are required to attend a parenting class. There’s also a mandatory 91-day waiting period from the time the petition is served until the divorce can be finalized. The divorce may be finalized by a decree from the court if the parties have reached an agreement or after a hearing if they have not. It’s recommended to seek legal advice to navigate through the complexities of the Colorado divorce process.

To file for divorce in Colorado, you will need to gather important documents such as a marriage certificate, financial information including income, debt and assets, property titles, and any prenuptial or postnuptial agreements. These documents are necessary to determine the division of assets and liabilities during the divorce proceedings.

Colorado is an equitable distribution state, which means that marital property is divided fairly but not necessarily equally. The court considers factors such as the length of the marriage, each party’s contribution to the marriage, and their economic circumstances when making a decision on property division.

In addition to dividing assets, the court will also make decisions regarding child custody, child support and spousal support (also known as alimony). Colorado courts prioritize co-parenting agreements that are in the best interests of the child. This may include joint custody or visitation rights for the non-custodial parent.

It’s important to note that Colorado has a no-fault divorce law, meaning that neither party is required to prove fault in order to file for divorce. This can save time and money in court proceedings.

If you are considering filing for divorce in Colorado, it’s important to understand the legal process and your rights. Seeking an experienced family lawyer can help you navigate the complex laws and regulations surrounding divorce in Colorado. A lawyer can also provide guidance on how to protect your assets and ensure a fair settlement.

Types of Divorce In Colorado

In Colorado, there are primarily two types of divorce: contested and uncontested. A contested divorce occurs when the parties cannot agree on one or more key issues to terminate their marriage conclusively. These issues may encompass child custody, child support, division of assets and debt, alimony, etc. On the other hand, an uncontested divorce refers to a situation where both parties have mutually agreed upon all their marital issues. This type of divorce is usually faster and less expensive.

There’s also a third type, “default” divorce. This happens if one spouse does not respond to the court about the divorce matter, in which case the court may grant all the requests of the other spouse. It is crucial to consult with a lawyer to understand what type of divorce suits your situation best while filing for divorce in Colorado.

Steps to File for Divorce in Colorado

For those looking for more information on how to file for divorce in Colorado, we’ve outlined the standard steps for a divorce across the state. Please speak with your attorney to

  1. Meet the Residency Requirement: One of the spouses must have lived in Colorado for at least 91 days before filing for divorce.
  2. Prepare the Necessary Forms: You will need to fill out several forms to file for divorce, including the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage or Legal Separation and the Summons for Dissolution of Marriage or Legal Separation.
  3. File the Forms with the Court: Once the forms are completed, they need to be filed with the district court in the county where you or your spouse lives.
  4. Serve Your Spouse: After filing, the other spouse must be officially notified of the divorce proceeding. This can be done by a process server, sheriff, or anyone over 18 who is not involved in the case.
  5. Wait for a Response: After being served, the other spouse has 21 days (if they’re in Colorado) or 35 days (if they’re outside Colorado) to respond.
  6. Negotiation and Court Proceedings: If the divorce is uncontested, you can submit a separation agreement and proceed to the final hearing. In a contested divorce, you may have to go through negotiations, mediation, or even a trial to resolve disputes.
  7. Final Decree: Once all issues are resolved, the court will issue a Decree of Dissolution of Marriage, officially ending the marriage. Remember to consult with a lawyer throughout this process to ensure your rights and interests are protected.

Remember to consult with a lawyer throughout this process to ensure your rights and interests are protected when filing for divorce in Colorado.

Benefits of Hiring an Attorney for Divorce in Colorado

Hiring an attorney when filing for divorce in Colorado provides several benefits. Firstly, a lawyer has a thorough understanding of Colorado’s divorce law and can guide you through the complex legal processes. They can help ensure all necessary paperwork is correctly filed and deadlines are met.

Secondly, an attorney can provide objective advice at a time when emotions may run high and cloud your judgment. They can help you make decisions that are in your best interest in the long term, rather than reacting emotionally to immediate circumstances.

Thirdly, a divorce attorney can help protect your rights and ensure that you receive a fair settlement, particularly when it comes to contentious issues such as asset division, child custody and support, and alimony. They can also assist in negotiations with your spouse or their lawyer and represent you in court, if necessary.

Lastly, hiring an attorney can save you time and stress, allowing you to focus on rebuilding your life during this difficult time. While there are costs associated with hiring a lawyer, the potential benefits in terms of protecting your rights, achieving a fair settlement and saving time and emotional strain are considerable.

Answering Your Questions about Your Colorado Family Law Case

The legal team at Petrelli Previtera, LLC can draw on our decades-long experience representing families like yours to provide timely answers that provide clarity for your situation.

  • Some of your questions might include:
  • What is consideredmarital property during a divorce in Colorado?
  • What Divorce Forms are needed during a Colorado Divorce?

Our family law attorneys are here to listen and work with you to explain how the law may apply to your case and if needed fight for your rights during your custody case.

Seeking Assistance with Divorce in Colorado

Don’t navigate the complexities of filing for divorce in Colorado alone. The stakes are too high, and the process too rigorous. Petrelli Previtera, LLC is here to provide the expert guidance and support you need. Our attorneys have the knowledge and skills to protect your rights and interests, ensuring the most favorable resolution of your case. Don’t wait—schedule a consultation with us today to start your journey toward a new chapter in your life. With Petrelli Previtera, LLC by your side, you can face the future with confidence.

Contact us today at (303) 416-7086 to schedule your consultation with our team.

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Here's what our clients have to say about working with us. Please note, results may vary based on individual circumstances.

Melinda Previtera, Esq. came highly recommended to our family. Her knowledge base, professionalism, and compassion paved the way for a successful outcome. Melinda is efficient, detailed, and informative. She helps manage expectations, and postures her client for a fair and equitable result. We are happy to recommend Melinda!

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My experience was very good. Everyone was professional and attentive to my needs, keeping me updated every step of the way. I couldn’t ask for a better result, highly recommended.

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My marriage life has been a hell for me for the past four years until I decided to put an end to what has to be ended. Choosing a lawyer was another additional stressful part of the long process. I’m so glad that I’ve found the right one for me at Petrelli Previtera. Life isn’t always fair, but at least having her in my corner, felt even better. I couldn’t recommend her highly enough!

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