Many couples face a divorce, and unfortunately for some, this becomes a real challenge. Lengthy litigation and costly lawyers can be very exhausted and depressing. But this does not mean that all couples must pass this way. Spouses who are willing to compromise and cooperate can get a divorce faster and at a lower cost. Such dissolution is called uncontested, and it is an affordable and convenient way to end a marriage.
Overview of an Uncontested Divorce in Colorado
An uncontested divorce is a quick and inexpensive way to dissolve a marriage. It takes an average of 91 days to get a final decree. This is possible because the husband and wife do not have disputes regarding the key conditions of their dissolution. In a contested termination, spouses must participate in court hearings to obtain a divorce decree. Moreover, the judge will decide on all disputed aspects of dissolution, which does not always satisfy the interests of the plaintiff or defendant. In this case, the duration of the divorce will depend on the number of controversial issues that exist in a pair. Thus, a contested dissolution can last for years. In addition, spouses must have lawyers who will defend their interests. As a result, divorce can be costly.
In an uncontested divorce, spouses do not need to participate in judicial meetings, because they simply have nothing to divide. The main condition for such a dissolution of marriage is the lack of any disagreement in the couple relating to the termination.
In Colorado, an uncontested divorce is better known as “decree upon affidavit.” This means that the judge will grant a divorce after the claimant submits an affidavit, and the plaintiff will not appear at the court hearing.
Requirements for an Uncontested Divorce in Colorado
The primary condition that is placed on couples who want to get an uncontested divorce is the lack of disputes related to termination. Thus, the spouses must come to the compromise on the following issues:
- Separation of marital property.
- Separation of custody of common minor children.
- Financial support for children and alimony.
If there are any other disputes, a compromise should also be found for them. Besides, an uncontested divorce in the state of Colorado has additional conditions:
- One of the spouses must live in Colorado for at least 90 days before filing the petition.
- The grounds for the divorce is that the marriage is irretrievably broken and there is no hope of reconciliation.
Regardless of the circumstances, the husband and wife must sign a separation agreement. This is a document that governs the basic provisions of marriage dissolution. According to this document, the judge will grant a divorce.
Colorado Divorce Paperwork
In order to start a divorce, the plaintiff must submit the relevant documents to the court. They may differ depending on the county and circumstances, but the list of the most commonly used divorce forms consists of:
- Petition for Dissolution of Marriage, JDF 1101
- Affidavit for Decree without the Appearance of Parties, JDF 1201
- Case Information Sheet, JDF 1000
- Waiver and Acceptance of Service/Return of Service
- Summons for Dissolution of Marriage JDF 1102
- Response, JDF 1103
- Notice of Domestic Relations Initial Status Conference, JDF 1120
- Sworn Financial Statement, Form 35.2, JDF 1111
- Certificate of Compliance with Mandatory Financial Disclosures, JDF 1104
- Decree of Dissolution JDF 1116
- Separation Agreement, JDF 1115
- Notice of Hearing, JDF 1124
- Worksheet A — Child Support Obligation
- Support Order, JDF 1117
- Parenting Plan, JDF 1113
- Notice to Withhold Income for Support, JDF 1804
In the situation when you are not sure what divorce forms are appropriate in your case, it’s better to consult with a county clerk to check what papers you need.
Online Divorce in Colorado
An uncontested divorce can be obtained without a lawyer. Spouses can choose all the necessary papers, fill them out, and sue independently. But there is a small risk because if the divorce forms are incorrect, the court will reject the claim. Therefore, many couples prefer to use the services of online divorce. This is a web site that helps fill out all the necessary papers. It works very simply: the spouses choose a company and answer questions about their marriage and termination on its website. After that, based on all received answers, the system selects forms that correspond to a particular case and fills them out. Completed divorce documents are available within a few business days. The cost of online divorce varies depending on the company, but on average, its price is $ 300.
Filing for Divorce in Colorado
A divorce begins when the plaintiff files a lawsuit with a court, namely, in the case of an uncontested divorce, you must file an Affidavit for Decree without the Appearance of Parties. In addition, you also need to file the rest of the divorce papers, which is necessary in a particular case. Spouses can do it together like co-petitioners, or either husband or wife can sue. In this case, the person who submits will be called the plaintiff, while the second spouse will be the respondent.
If only one spouse files a lawsuit, he must provide copies of all documents to the respondent after the county clerk registers the case. This is called serving a spouse. If both spouses file the claim, the serving is not needed.
When all documents are filed with the court, a waiting period of at least 90 days will begin, after which the court will proceed to the consideration of the case. After the expiration of the waiting period, the court will consider whether it is necessary to call the spouses to a meeting or not. In many cases, the judge grants a divorce without the presence of the spouses. At the same time, all the necessary documents establishing the dissolution of the marriage the spouses will receive by mail. However, there are also situations when the judge calls the spouses to attend a court hearing to make sure that all key aspects of the termination are actually settled, after which he signs a divorce decree.