Do Both Parties Have to Agree to Divorce in Colorado?
By Fred Dunsing on June 13, 2020
Often, when a person files for divorce, both spouses agree that the marriage is over. However, sometimes one spouse either disagrees to the divorce or neglects to respond to divorce papers. Given these types of circumstances, people may wonder, do both parties have to agree to divorce in Colorado?
Colorado is a no-fault state for divorce, which means, as long as the marriage is considered irretrievably broken, a divorce can be granted. This includes cases where both parties are not in agreement regarding the divorce. The divorce attorneys at Dunsing, Deakins & Galera, LLC can assist clients in Denver, CO, and in the Vail Valley, and surrounding areas in filing for divorce without their spouse’s consent.
Grounds for Divorce in Colorado
In the distant past, if a person wanted to file for divorce from a spouse, he or she had to prove that there was a valid basis for the dissolution of the marriage. The person filing for divorce would have to validate the request by providing evidence of problems such as abuse, neglect, or adultery. Today, things are much different.
As a no-fault state, grounds for a divorce in Colorado are quite simple. The state requires:
- At least one spouse must have resided in Colorado for at least 90 days
- The marriage is irretrievably broken
- Involved parties have been under jurisdiction of the court where the petition has been pending for at least 90 days
What If My Spouse Fails to Respond to a Divorce Petition?
A divorce can be granted in the state of Colorado even if one spouse fails to respond to the filing. Unfortunately, this may extend and complicate the divorce proceeding.
When a divorce petition is filed, the court will make every attempt to serve the other spouse with divorce papers. If the location of the individual is unknown, he or she may be notified of the divorce petition publicly, potentially through a newspaper or other publication. If the spouse fails to respond to the petition after all attempts are made, the court will typically accept this as a non-denial that the marriage is irretrievably broken, and the divorce will be granted.
In cases where a default judgement is granted, our attorneys assist our clients in composing a reasonable divorce settlement to present to the court. We will propose solutions for issues such as division of assets, child custody, and child support (if applicable). As long as the proposal is reasonable, the court should grant the requests.
What If My Spouse Contests the Divorce?
It is very rare for a spouse to contest a divorce petition, but it does happen. If a spouse denies, under oath, that the marriage is irretrievably broken, the court may order the parties to counseling, or hold a hearing on the petition. However, in almost all situations, the court will allow the petition to proceed.
In these cases, our attorneys can represent our clients in court to present reasons behind the filing of the divorce, and further explanation for why the marriage is considered irretrievably broken. Though the court may order counseling or mediation before making a final determination, a divorce is nearly always ultimately granted.
Contact Our Legal Team
Whether you and your spouse are in agreement regarding divorce or not, it is always important to have a knowledgeable attorney on your side. If you’d like to meet with the divorce attorneys at Dunsing, Deakins & Galera, LLC to discuss your case, send us a message at your earliest convenience or call our law firm at (303) 758-8981.
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