If you want to file for divorce, it’s important to speak to a divorce lawyer in Colorado promptly. A divorce is a complicated ordeal, and you don’t want to go through it all alone. A lawyer can guide you through the entire process and help you avoid making costly mistakes.
Divorce is not uncommon in the United States. Family lawyers are often well-versed in this area of law. No matter what the circumstances surrounding the divorce are, it is imperative to always have your own lawyer who will look out for your best interest. Even if the divorce is amicable and you feel like your soon-to-be ex-spouse is a reasonable person, you need to have someone on your side who will make sure the divorce process is fair. You want to feel like you can trust the person who is giving you advice and that they will have your best interest at heart. This is why you absolutely need your own divorce lawyer, rather than sharing one with your ex.
Table Of Contents
- How to Get Ready for Divorce Mediation
- How to Navigate Through a Divorce
- Understand the Different Situations That May Arise
- Tactics Used in a Divorce
- 4 Unique Benefits of Divorce Mediation
- Colorado Divorce Law Infographic
- Getting Divorced With Children Involved
- Splitting Assets In A Divorce
- Common Myths About Divorce
- Colorado Divorce Law Statistics
- Common Divorce Mistakes to Avoid
- Colorado Divorce Law FAQs
- Zweig Law, PC Colorado Divorce Lawyer
- Colorado Divorce Lawyer Google Review
- Contact Our Colorado Divorce Lawyer Today
How to Get Ready for Divorce Mediation
Divorce doesn’t always have to involve drawn-out court battles. More and more divorcing couples are opting for mediation. During mediation, a neutral third party will help you and your spouse come to a fair agreement in your divorce. Here are a few tips on preparing for divorce mediation:
Gather The Necessary Documents
A divorce mediation session will be more productive if you bring the appropriate documents. Some of the documents you may want to take with you include bank statements, a list of real estate owned by you and your spouse, life insurance policies, and retirement accounts.
Have An Open Mind
The point of mediation is for divorcing couples to come to a mutual agreement. As such, it is critical to go into each mediation session with an open mind. Even if your spouse says something that you don’t initially agree with, take the time to listen to his or her point of view. If you yell or interrupt, you’ll get nowhere.
Determine What You Want To Achieve
Before you head off to your first mediation session, sit down and figure out what you want out of your divorce. Perhaps you would like to stay in the family home. Or maybe you would like to have your kids during the holidays. Have a good idea about what matters you’re willing to compromise on and what matters you are not willing to compromise on.
Hire A Lawyer
Although mediation is more low-key than going to court, it is still in your best interest to work with a divorce lawyer in Colorado. He or she should sit in during these sessions and make sure that you understand everything.
Leave your emotions at home. As difficult as it may be, try to put aside your emotions. While you might feel anger, hurt or resentment towards your spouse, it’s important to think rationally during mediation sessions and think about the future. If you allow your emotions to cloud your judgment, mediation may not be successful.
How to Navigate Through a Divorce
Divorce is a particularly difficult occurrence for those who are involved with it. Divorce for some individuals is a breath of fresh air while for others it can feel like their lives are falling apart. Shared bank accounts, finances, properties, assets, and more may end up being split in a divorce. If the couple has children then a child custody battle may end up taking place. Child support payments and alimony may also be instituted by the court. Regardless of the different actions that take place in a divorce, it’s crucial to understand that help exists. No one has to go through a divorce fully on their own. Turn to the experience and guidance from Zweig Law, PC to help navigate and come to important agreements in a divorce.
Understand the Different Situations That May Arise
Divorce can bring about many different things throughout the course of the proceedings. Details of a spouse’s life will be examined. Whether they were faithful in the marriage is especially important to the outcome of the divorce settlement. Other factors like finances and important decision-making may also be brought up. If the couple has children then the time spent with children and care provided by each spouse will also be examined. The court will do all they can to try and understand the relationship as best they can. That means that every detail will be brought to light. In some cases, this can bring about strong behavior and emotions may run high. This is why turning to a divorce lawyer in Colorado is so critical to ensure that the terms and agreements are fair for the client.
Tactics Used in a Divorce
The other spouse’s legal team will do all they can for their client to at the very least receive what to them seems fair in a divorce proceeding. This can oftentimes make the other spouse feel that they are taking advantage. Certain tactics may be used that don’t provide the full picture of the marriage. If one spouse spends more time at work to provide for the family then this may even be used against the other spouse. The other legal team may paint the picture that that spouse is neglecting their family by working more than spending time with their family. They may also find small examples to try and further this claim. Countering these instances is important to ensure that the court doesn’t use those claims as their evidence.
Benefits of Divorce Mediation
When you and your ex-spouse choose to go through with a divorce, you may begin to feel overwhelmed at the amount of stress or potential arguments you both have may to deal with. However, using divorce mediation does come with several benefits that typically help couples who have children and want a lower-stress process.
1. More Freedom
In mediation, you typically have the control to choose a specific and unique parenting agreement for yourself or your children during the process. Unlike arguing your case in court, you have the flexibility to talk as much as you want and pick what topics you both want to discuss.
Since there are no public records of what occurred, unlike a regular divorce in court, you may feel more comfortable discussing certain topics. Involving a divorce lawyer in Colorado like Zweig Law PC may help you think about what you should say.
2. More Collaboration
Due to the nature of mediation, you typically work with your ex-spouse instead of against him or her to come to an agreement. This means you both can avoid endless arguments over small details, which can save you time and money. This sense of collaboration also helps your relationship to end on good terms, instead of with hurt feelings. Having a divorce lawyer in Colorado by your side may help you throughout this time.
3. Easier on Children
When a divorce happens, the children may feel caught between two sides. This kind of tension can leave them with feelings of lingering stress, especially as the process starts. Mediation is usually less formal and more focused on respectful dialogue. The more peaceful process allows for you and your ex-spouse to focus on your children’s needs and come to a conclusion that benefits them the most. Finding a divorce lawyer in Colorado could be a step you want to take.
4. Less Tension
Having a third party overseeing any conversations can help couples who had many disagreements and fights during their marriage to feel more comfortable speaking their minds. Instead of being in the middle of an adversarial lawsuit, mediation allows you to weigh options and discuss important topics like childcare and asset division at your own pace.
This results in less tension between you and your ex-spouse since both sides can eventually get what they want out of the process. Talking to a divorce lawyer in Colorado like Zweig Law PC can help you choose the next best step in how to approach your divorce.
Colorado Divorce Law Infographic
Getting Divorced With Children Involved
The divorce process does become more difficult when there are children involved. Not only are you fighting for your own rights, but you also want to protect your children as well. There is child custody to figure out as well as child support issues. If one parent makes much more than the other, they will likely be ordered to pay some sort of child support. A judge will always look in the best interest of the child is, so it is crucial to have an experienced divorce lawyer on your side to help you share your case. Your lawyer will know how to best communicate with the judge and be able to tell the story of how you will be a good parent to keep custody of your children. You may share custody or, if one parent is completely unfit, get sole custody of your children. If your ex is a good parent and you want to share custody, you should still hire a lawyer to look over the paperwork involved and make sure that your interests are always protected.
Splitting Assets In A Divorce
It can sometimes be difficult to figure out how to split up the assets that you and your ex-spouse share. Every state has different rules on this, which is why it is important to hire a divorce lawyer near you to help work through everything together. It will also depend if you or your ex signed a prenuptial agreement before getting married. Sometimes this document can be void – like in the instance of infidelity – but other times it really does dictate who gets what in the divorce.
Common Myths About Divorce
If you plan on getting a divorce, it is important to know the facts. There are a lot of myths about divorce that you may have heard. Here are a few common misconceptions that you shouldn’t believe.
Marital Assets Are Divided In Half
Too many people assume that everything will be divided in half in a divorce. This just is not true. Colorado is an equitable distribution state, so assets will be divided fairly, not necessarily evenly. A judge may consider multiple factors when deciding how to divide assets, such as each spouse’s financial situation and what each spouse contributed to the asset.
You Can Tackle Your Divorce On Your Own
It is true that you’re not required to hire a lawyer to proceed with a divorce. Some people may even avoid hiring legal assistance to save on expenses. However, neglecting to hire an experienced divorce lawyer in Colorado is truly a disservice to yourself. A divorce is a complex process and you’re more likely to get taken advantage of by the other side without the help of a lawyer. Hiring a skilled divorce lawyer is completely worth the cost. He or she will guide you through the entire process and improve your chances of obtaining a fair settlement.
The Judge Always Grants Custody To The Mother
While this may have been true many years ago, it is not the case today. A judge will not automatically award the mother custody in a divorce. He or she will keep the child’s best interests in mind when determining custody. For example, if the mother has a history of mental illness, the judge may decide to award custody to the father.
Parents Who Don’t Pay Child Support Can’t See Their Kids
While there are consequences to skipping child support payments, not seeing your kids is not one of them. If you have missed child support payments, your ex-spouse still does not have the legal right to withhold visitation from you.
Divorce Always Involves Heated Court Battles
It’s true that some divorces can be heated and drawn out. However, it doesn’t have to be that way. If you and your ex-spouse can compromise on major issues in your divorce, such as property division and child custody, you may be able to settle your divorce faster and experience less stress.
Colorado Divorce Law Statistics
According to the divorce rate by state report, Colorado has a divorce rate of about 14%, which ranks the state as the the15th highest divorce rate in the country. Colorado divorce rates have increased by 5% over the past 3 years. Divorce rates have a pattern of increasing in March and August of each year.
Common Divorce Mistakes to Avoid
Experienced divorce attorneys often witness firsthand the emotional and financial toll that divorce can take on individuals and their families. Throughout the divorce process, it is crucial for parties involved to remain vigilant and avoid common mistakes that may exacerbate the difficulties and prolong the legal proceedings. This article will highlight some of these pitfalls and offer guidance on how to sidestep them, ultimately leading to a more efficient and amicable resolution of divorce cases.
Allowing Emotions to Dictate Decision-Making
Divorce often brings with it a whirlwind of emotions, including anger, resentment, and sadness. However, it is vital for parties involved to separate these emotions from the legal process to ensure rational decision-making. Allowing emotions to cloud judgment can lead to contentious battles, costly litigation, and decisions that may not be in one’s long-term best interest. Instead, focusing on making well-reasoned choices with the assistance of legal counsel and other trusted advisors is recommended.
Failing to Consider Alternative Dispute Resolution
Litigation should not always be the first choice for resolving divorce disputes. Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) methods, such as mediation and collaborative divorce, offer a more amicable and cost-effective approach to resolving issues related to property division, child custody, and spousal support. Engaging in ADR can lead to more satisfactory outcomes for both parties and minimize the emotional impact on any children involved.
Hiding or Failing to Disclose Assets
It may be tempting for individuals involved in a divorce to conceal assets or fail to disclose all financial information in an attempt to protect their interests. However, this strategy is not only unethical but can also have severe legal consequences. Courts take a dim view of parties who engage in deceptive practices, and any hidden assets discovered during the divorce process can lead to penalties, an unfavorable property division, and loss of credibility in future negotiations.
Overlooking Tax Implications
The division of marital assets, spousal support, and child support can have significant tax implications for both parties. Failing to consider these consequences can result in unforeseen financial burdens long after the divorce has been finalized. It is advisable to consult with a tax professional or an attorney with expertise in the tax implications of divorce to ensure that potential tax liabilities are properly addressed during the settlement process.
Neglecting to Update Estate Planning Documents
Amidst the turmoil of divorce, it is easy to overlook the need to update estate planning documents, such as wills, trusts, and beneficiary designations on insurance policies and retirement accounts. Failing to make these updates can lead to unintended consequences, such as the ex-spouse inheriting assets or retaining control over financial and medical decisions. It is essential to review and revise these documents in conjunction with the divorce process to ensure that one’s wishes are accurately reflected.
Navigating the complexities of divorce can be challenging, and it is essential for individuals involved to avoid common mistakes that may prolong the process or lead to unfavorable outcomes. By maintaining a rational approach to decision-making, considering alternative dispute resolution methods, disclosing assets fully and honestly, addressing tax implications, and updating estate planning documents, parties can facilitate a smoother and more amicable resolution of their divorce cases.
Colorado Divorce Law FAQs
Why Choose Zweig Law, PC To Represent Me?
The divorce lawyers at Zweig Law, PC are sincere and diligent legal experts who stand by their clients. Headed by prestigious and award-winning lawyers with decades of experience, you can rest assured that you’re choosing the right team. To set up an appointment, call 970-986-6460 or contact us online for a free consultation.
What Are Colorado’s Marital Property Laws?
Perhaps you’ve heard of community property states. In community property states, any property that belonged to each spouse before marriage remains their separate property after they divorce. Any property that became theirs during the marriage is their community property. Community property is divided evenly between spouses. But that doesn’t mean that each spouse gets 50/50 automatically. Rather, if one spouse is more in need than the other, that spouse is more inclined to receive more of the community property as that is seen as 50/50 in comparison to what one spouse already owns. Of course, exceptions to property that one spouse acquires during the marriage apply to gifts and inheritance. Gifts and inheritance remain separate property.
Colorado’s marital laws differ from community property state laws. Colorado is an equitable distribution law state. Equitable distribution can operate somewhat similarly to community property in that a judge looks to what’s fair. As with community property states, what’s fair isn’t necessarily or always 50/50. Instead, what’s fair may mean that the spouse will less income get ¾ of the property or value of the property, and the spouse with a higher income gets ¼ of the property or value of the property.
It’s not uncommon for a divorce court judge to make you and your soon-to-be-ex-spouse sell your home and divide the proceeds, instead of granting one spouse ownership of the home. This is true for vehicles, land, etc. Of course, if children are involved then courts almost always award the primary custodial parent ownership of the marital home and possibly the car(s).
What Are Colorado’s Spousal Maintenance Laws?
Unlike child support, spousal maintenance, also known as “alimony”, is not automatic. It must be a request made before the court, and the judge and parties must agree to it. Now, there are two types of spousal maintenance a lesser-income-earning spouse may request. They are statutory maintenance and contractual, non-modifiable maintenance. The higher-income-earning spouse pays statutory maintenance before the divorce is finalized, such as during a legal separation or as you two are going through the divorce process. This type is temporary. You see, it only lasts for a certain percentage of the length of your marriage, and Colorado laws cap the length of payment at 50%.
Yet, if you’ve been married for more than 20 years, then this cap doesn’t necessarily apply, and a judge may award you or your ex a lifetime receipt of alimony. On the contrary, if you’ve been married for less than three years, a judge is not obligated to award you or your ex-maintenance. That’s not to say that a judge won’t, so you should still consult with an ambitious divorce lawyer in Colorado who’ll argue passionately and aggressively on your behalf.
Contractual, non-modifiable maintenance, however, is just what it says. Not even a judge can amend it. If you agree to pay maintenance to your ex and later lose your job, you’re still legally obligated to make the payment amount that you’re legally bound to make. On the other hand, if you get a huge pay increase, your ex cannot demand more money.
How do I tell my child about the divorce?
Having a child, any child, learn about their parents’ divorce is never an easy aspect of the process, but it is important. This is often an extremely heart-wrenching and difficult task to do, and maybe even more so challenging if the child has special needs. However, there are things you can do to make it easier for your child to understand.
When you are telling a child, you can tell the news to your child with your spouse’s help. This is going to further reassure your child that both parents are going to be part of their life. You should ensure that you inform your child about the divorce in a location that they are used to, such as the living room in your home, and be sure to keep calm because kids are going to pick up on your energy and that can cause them to be worried and anxious.
You could also consider specific therapy that will adjust the feelings about the divorce that your child has and help them process these feelings in a way that is beneficial to their needs and abilities. It is very normal for a child to experience the exacerbation of symptoms. However, this is almost always temporary, and of course, you should take into account what your child knows and what your child needs to be successful. Your child might not be like other children and that’s okay. You can tailor how you inform your child about the divorce to their needs and capabilities of understanding.
What to include in my parenting plan?
When you are deciding on your parenting plan, the more detail that you can have, the better. If you can account for every little detail, the more mishaps and miscommunications or disagreements, you will have with your spouse on the road as your divorce proceeds and is finalized. You want to avoid causing a situation where your child’s treatment is delayed because you and your spouse cannot agree. When creating a parenting plan your divorce lawyer in Colorado is going to tell you that you should include items such as the one-parent care for the child full-time, what parenting time schedule is going to best support your child, how will our standard visitation schedules in regards to what your child needs if they are inappropriate what is appropriate? Are you going to share medical decision-making or one parent have the final say, what happens if your child needs full-time care, how do you accommodate and pay for your child, and more.
How can I make sure assets are split fairly?
When you are going through a divorce, one of the main concerns on your mind may be your finances, a Colorado divorce lawyer knows. Many people who are going through divorce have concerns about how their assets will be distributed and whether they will be able to keep all of their assets. How assets are split during a divorce depends on whether you have gotten them before or during your divorce. Some states have different approaches to asset distribution during a divorce, and not every state is an equitable distribution state. You can improve your chances of receiving a fair amount of assets by consulting with a lawyer early.
What are ways I can protect my parental rights?
For couples who have children together, divorce can be especially hard to endure. While you both may want what is best for your children, you may have diverging ideas of how to accomplish that goal. You can do several things to preserve your parental rights and maintain a strong relationship with your children as you navigate divorce and the period after it. You can protect your custodial rights by continuously being there for your child and showing that you are in a stable position to care for them. Make positive decisions that keep your child’s best interests in mind and the court will be mindful of your actions and how you are supporting your child when they are determining custody arrangements.
Do I need to pay alimony?
Alimony refers to the payments that a spouse must make to their ex following divorce. Not every divorce requires that alimony must be paid, so it depends on the circumstances of each divorce. The length of the marriage is a major factor in whether alimony must be paid or not. For example, if a couple was only married for less than ten years, alimony may not be a requirement. If alimony is a requirement in the divorce terms, the length of the marriage can also affect what amount is to be paid to a spouse. A skilled Colorado divorce lawyer can explain more about how alimony is determined.
What if I get divorced and live in a different state?
Getting divorced while living in a different state can raise some questions and uncertainty, and it can be hard to understand. If you file for divorce or are being served divorce papers while living in a different state than where it was filed, then jurisdiction depends on your specific situation. For example, if the divorcing spouse lived in the state and the other moved to a different state, then that one filing for divorce can continue the process within their home state. If you have questions about how to navigate going through a divorce when you and your ex live in different states, you can receive advice and guidance from a lawyer.
What are common divorce expenses?
Divorce comes with many costs, and it is not easy to go through the entire process without having a lot of expenses. You will have to pay for legal fees, court fees, moving expenses, and other types of costs. Since you and your spouse are splitting assets, you may lose a significant amount as well. Some of the ways that you can reduce your total expenses while going through divorce is to consult a lawyer early. They can do a thorough analysis of your finances and make suggestions such as not pursuing litigation and forming an agreement with your spouse. For more information about legal services, contact a Colorado divorce lawyer from Zweig Law, PC for a consultation at no cost.
Colorado Divorce Laws
Understanding Colorado Divorce Laws
Divorce is a complex legal process that affects couples emotionally and financially, but a Colorado divorce lawyer from our office can help you with your next steps. In Colorado, divorce laws are designed to ensure fairness and clarity during this challenging time. When navigating the rocky terrains of a marital dissolution, it’s crucial to have an experienced legal team to guide you through the intricacies of state-specific legislation.
Residency Requirements And Grounds For Divorce
To file for divorce in Colorado, also known as the dissolution of marriage, one party must have been a resident of the state for at least 91 days prior to filing. Colorado is a purely “no-fault” divorce state, which means that the only ground for divorce is an irretrievable breakdown of the marriage. This no-fault approach signifies that the court does not consider either party’s misconduct in the marriage when deciding on the divorce-related issues.
Division Of Property
Colorado adheres to the principle of equitable distribution when it comes to dividing marital property. Unlike community property states, marital assets in Colorado are not necessarily split equally but rather equitably, which means fairly based on various factors. These factors may include the contribution of each spouse to the acquisition of marital property, the value of property set apart to each spouse, and the economic circumstances each spouse will face after the divorce. This is where the counsel of a skilled legal team becomes indispensable, ensuring that property division is addressed with an eye for detail and fairness.
Alimony And Maintenance
Alimony, known in Colorado as maintenance, is financial support paid by one spouse to another post-divorce. The state has specific guidelines to determine the amount and duration of maintenance, considering factors such as the length of the marriage, the age and health of each spouse, and the standard of living during the marriage. A judge may award temporary or permanent maintenance, depending on the circumstances. Working with our knowledgeable Colorado divorce lawyers can help you understand how these laws may apply to your situation and can aid in securing an equitable maintenance arrangement.
Child Custody And Support
In Colorado, the best interests of the child take precedence in determining custody arrangements. Courts consider many factors when deciding on parenting time and decision-making responsibilities, including the wishes of the parents, the child’s preferences, the child’s relationship with each parent, and the child’s adjustment to home, school, and community. Child support is based on a formula that takes into account both parents’ incomes, the number of children, and the time each parent spends with the children. Ensuring a child’s well-being is paramount, and precise legal guidance is essential in these matters.
Choosing The Right Legal Guidance
Navigating a divorce in Colorado requires not just a legal representative but a firm that stands by you with a depth of local expertise and a commitment to achieving the best possible outcome. Zweig Law, PC understands the weight of what you’re going through and provides unparalleled legal representation to safeguard your interests during the entire divorce process.
We believe that your peace of mind comes from understanding your rights and options under Colorado law. If you are considering a divorce and require legal assistance, reach out to our dedicated team. We will work tirelessly to provide you with the professional and compassionate service you need during this time. Contact a Colorado divorce lawyer from our office today for a consultation, and let us help you start the next chapter of your life with confidence and clarity.
Zweig Law, PC Colorado Divorce Lawyer
130 Ski Hill Road, Suite 200, Breckenridge, Colorado 80424
Colorado Divorce Lawyer Google Review
“Maryjo, Steve and Cathy were very tough, thoughtful and compassionate attorneys when I needed them most. I went through a very lengthy and litigious divorce, all three were the perfect combination in what was needed to complete my divorce. Maryjo was the point person for my divorce, all three are excellent I want to be clear. In court, Maryjo was an excellent litigator, which is what I needed. She would be only person I would want if I had to go to trial again. Steve was the person who scoured the details and the depositions finding all the extra details we needed for court. Cathy guided me through several tough meditations. All three are excellent, and they all have different approaches. I absolutely recommend this team, and I would use them again if needed! If you want to speak with me personally please let Maryjo know and I would be happy to recommend them personally to you.” – Mindee S.
Contact Our Colorado Divorce Lawyer Today
Schedule a consultation with a divorce lawyer in Colorado as soon as you and your ex decide that you want to split up. Call Zweig Law, PC Attorneys today. We can go over the details of your case and help determine the best way of moving forward. It is always important to have representation in your case so that you do not get taken advantage of. Even if you and your ex are on good terms, it is wise to have a knowledgeable lawyer on your team to look over your documents. Contact us today to learn more.