Why a Decree of Dissolution of Marriage is important to get in Colorado

Colorado is a “no fault” divorce state, unlike somewhere you must have stated reasons why the marriage needs to end. In Colorado the official term is “irretrievably broken”. Colorado does not require you to call out the other party, but it does require quite a lot of paperwork and proof including your residency, has the other party been process served, how custody, support, visitation, and other parental rights have been equitably agreed upon, debt division, domicile, and other things that all can become issues if not handled appropriately just to start.

It is possible to get divorced, called a “decree of dissolution of marriage”, and do it yourself in Colorado.  If the divorce is uncontested, there are no bills to pay or assets to divide, the cars are each in one person’s name, then you can do it fairly easily.  Few divorces are that simple, and therefore, it is not advisable.  If there are any assets, children, financial obligations, property, fiscal assets or anything else that has to be settled, in all likelihood you will not be protected if something comes up after the Decree is dated, signed by the court, and on file with the Clerk’s office.  The reason is enforceability.

The reason Colorado calls it a “decree” is the order becomes enforceable based on the final date of dissolution. It draws a hard and fast legal line to protect you, and there is no question of who is liable for what or who has rights to what.  In other words, if other bills are run up and no separation order was filed, you may find yourself liable for expenses you did not plan on.  If you have a verbal agreement and nothing is put in writing about use of the vacation house, guess what? You loose. Everything needs to be spelled out.

This is particularly important for child custody agreements, visitation, and child support. Colorado takes a strong stance on both parents being allowed to see their kids, but also both parents being required to be responsible for the rearing of those kids. If you want to keep your visitation rights, you best do what the decree states about child support and other agreements listed in writing. Don’t expect the court to give you things not laid out legally “just because” regarding children, because they won’t.

Make sure you have everything taken care of when you get divorced. An attorney like Patricia Perello in Colorado Springs offers free initial consults so you know exactly what needs done and how to proceed for getting a solid Decree of Dissolution of Marriage that will hold up.