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Divorce 

Dissolving a marriage is complicated and there is no need to make it more difficult by confusing the business of divorce with the emotions of divorce. After years of experience, Knowlton Law stays focused on the business of divorce. The two primary areas of the business of divorce are children and finances.

Children

Children come first in all decisions regarding their future welfare. Colorado courts resolve all decisions based on the “best interest of the children” and look at two areas to decide what is in the best interest of the children: decision making and parenting time.

Decision Making

Optimally both parents should make the major decisions regarding their children. The case when only one parent makes the decisions usually arise in situations where one parent is incapable of making decision or has been convicted of child abuse or is abusive to the other parent to such an extent the parties are unable to communicate effectively with each other.

Parenting Time

Parenting time is more fluid.  Where the child resides and when the child visits the other parent depends on many factors including age, situation of the parent, and maintaining a stable environment for the growth and development of the children.

In both decision making and parenting time, it is best that the parents decide how they want to continue their relationship with their children.  Too often, when left to the court and the parent’s attorneys, the decision is perceived as imposed from outside and the children bear the brunt of the residual disappointment of one or both parents.

Child Support

Child support is based on a formula written into Colorado law.  The incomes of both parents are combined and based on the legislated formula, which includes parenting time and who pays health insurance, an amount is determined.  Even though determining child support should be relatively easy, there are certain fluctuating factors that an attorney can help explain in order to avoid making some ill advised decisions. Click on Child Support Worksheet to access Colorado child support worksheets provided by Colorado Judiciary.

 

Financial Considerations

Dividing up a couple’s property in a divorce is always a loss in value of the property for no other reason than expenses are doubled.  The decision on how to divide the property, including all debts, accumulated during a marriage takes time and planning. If you are able to do this between yourselves, the process should be over within the three (3) months Colorado law requires before a Court will enter a divorce decree.   If not, Knowlton Law will guide you through the process.

The most important point to remember is that Colorado law requires the division of marital property to be “equitable”.  This does not mean equal except for the fact that if the issue comes before a judge in a hearing because the parties cannot decide for themselves, courts may interpret “equitable” to mean equal.

Another important point to consider when dividing up marital property is that a determination of maintenance (alimony) is made only after the marital property is divided.  The reason behind this is that if one party receives sufficient assets, that party would not need additional money to live on.  Of course, this consideration applies to couples with substantial assets.

Maintenance

Maintenance is a sum of money paid by one party to the other if one party does not have a means of making a living sufficient to support his or herself.  Maintenance draws its fair share of conflict between parties because of the diminished value of a couple’s lifestyle.   Bottom line is one party must need money to live on and the other party msut have the ability to help that party out for a certain period of time or until that party is capable of supporting him or herself.  Consulting an attorney will help understand this potentially volatile area and may even help resolve it with less conflict.

Other Considerations

Knowlton Law can help with many other issues that arise when couples decide to dissolve a marriage. These include modification of any issue described above, the most common of which is child support, allocation of parental responsibilities for unmarried parents, drafting pre- and post-nuptial agreements, relocation issues and domestic violence to name a few.

We subscribe to the idea that it is better for individuals to solve their issues between themselves and we are trained in mediation to help individuals find their own answers.  Our goal is to provide a collaborative law approach which will minimize the conflict that too often pervades the arena of divorce law.

For more detailed information please refer to the outline of “Business of Divorce".