Going through a divorce can be challenging. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t try and smooth things out for yourself. One of the things people usually worry about the most while going through a divorce is their money. This article will tell you how you can have a cheaper marriage dissolution in Colorado and not let this occasion become a wrecking ball for your financial situation.
Grounds for Divorce in Colorado
Colorado is a no-fault state, just like many others in the USA. This means that a couple can simply claim that their marriage is irretrievably broken, and reconciliation is not an option to get divorced. It means that if a couple believes that no amount of therapy, talking, or time can save their relationship – it is a valid enough reason for a judge to grant them a divorce.
There are still states like Michigan where the “no-fault” rule applies, but the judge might also consider fault like adultery, abuse, or insanity. In such a case, these grounds might affect the final verdict. Luckily, this practice is slowly but surely disappearing. Colorado is one of those states where “no-fault” is the only valid reason to end a marriage legally.
What If the Other Spouse Disagrees?
Usually, both spouses agree to have a divorce. Unless one of them wants to prove otherwise, the judge will decide that the marriage can be terminated. However, if one spouse doesn’t want a divorce, the judge might also consider the following:
- Circumstances that led to one of the spouses wanting a divorce;
- Potential for the marriage’s repair;
If the court isn’t convinced that the divorce should be granted, a judge might ask the couple to attend counseling. The proceedings will resume no less than 35 and no more than 63 days after that.
How to File for Divorce in Colorado
It doesn’t matter if you’re having an uncontested and fast “DIY divorce” or you’re looking at many weeks of negotiation with your ex-partner’s lawyers. There are still some aspects of the filing process that you should be familiar with.
Step 1: Meeting the Residency Requirements of the Colorado State
First and foremost, you should know that in Colorado, a divorce decree can only be entered after a waiting period of 91 days following either:
- The day that respondent received a legal notification about the divorce;
- The day that respondent joined the divorce petition;
- The day that respondent appeared in court.
Step 2: Providing “Grounds” for the Divorce
Any divorce process requires legal grounds to be started. As we have already mentioned, in Colorado, which is a “no-fault” state, having an “irretrievably broken” marriage is a valid enough reason for filing for divorce.
Step 3: Filing the Divorce Papers and Sending Them to a Respondent
Typically, this step is the most financially-consuming. If the couple cannot reach a mutual understanding to have an uncontested divorce and have property division issues or alimony to consider – they should hire a lawyer. Trying to resolve certain issues on your own might result in an even bigger financial loss than the one parties were initially trying to avoid.
If a divorce is uncontested, then it’s a good idea to consider using one of the many divorce-forms-preparation services coloradoonlinedivorce.com. Also known as online divorce, it’s a more affordable option than hiring a lawyer. For a web divorce, you fill out a questionnaire about your marriage and receive your completed divorce forms within a couple of days.
Spouses cannot complete the entire divorce online — only a court can grant a final decree. However, divorce companies can prepare all of the necessary documents, greatly simplifying the process and saving you time and money. After receiving your ready paperwork from the internet divorce company, you’ll need to file the application for divorce with the court. Colorado also has an electronic filing system in the court’s official portal. But before submitting documents, spouses must clarify in court on what conditions it is possible to use it.
How Else to Save Money Through a Divorce
Apart from knowing which steps to take during a divorce, parties can do other things to reduce their divorce expenses.
Keeping Emotions Under Control
Divorce is something that can make people act irrationally and let their emotions influence important decisions. When the desire to cause extra trouble to your soon-to-be ex-wife or ex-husband comes in, there is a considerable risk that minor disagreements could grow into major battles.
Every dispute that you find yourself in with your ex-spouse will require some extra action from your lawyer. Eventually, it will cost you more time and money to resolve these issues. By keeping your emotions under control, you can avoid unnecessary fights and significantly save money.
Consider Using Mediation
If spouses cannot reach a mutual understanding quickly, it might mean taking matters to trial, especially if such matters as child custody or spousal support are involved. To avoid that, parties should try to make every reasonable effort to resolve issues and come to an agreement. If the soon-to-be ex-spouses can’t do this on their own, it might be appropriate to consider mediation.
In divorce processes, mediation usually means hiring a neutral third-party specialist to resolve disputes between the spouses. Moreover, in Colorado, mediation is obligatory when the couple is about to attend the final hearing regarding their divorce. Don’t worry. A mediator won’t make decisions for you. These specialists only help ex-spouses negotiate through peaceful communication. It is a common practice for retired judges to become mediators. In this case, you might also receive valuable insight from a judicial perspective.
Keeping Track of the Bills
Divorce is a time and energy-consuming period when you can be too distracted to keep track of all your expenses. Here’s what parties can do to keep up with the costs during the divorce process:
- If they’re trying to get a divorce over the internet by using an online service for divorce paperwork preparation and have decided to proceed without an attorney – research the website before paying for anything. It will help to avoid any charges for unnecessary services. Even though this option can reduce the overall cost of divorce, it might still be a bit over the budget. Also, don’t forget to count your court filing fees;
- If parties are paying a law specialist to assist in divorce matters – they should carefully read the fee agreement and ask any questions before signing a contract;
- List all living expenses. Filing for divorce doesn’t just split parties. It also divides the family budget. This means that from the moment a petitioner applies for divorce, their financial capabilities might become somewhat limited. Some people find themselves in a situation where they are not sure if they can continue to afford their living expenses after getting a divorce. Listing individual expenses might help spouses realize what they can afford on their own.
No matter if you are the petitioner or the respondent, there are still ways for you to make your dissolution of marriage as inexpensive and stress-free as possible. Just remember that no matter how much of a financial and emotional shake it might be – there’s always happiness afterward.