Colorado Springs Legal Separation Attorney


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Why A Legal Separation?

One thing you can do to move a divorce towards a resolution quickly is to begin with a legal separation. Why would you want to “speed up” your divorce? Some of main reasons why a person would want their divorce include;

  • Cost. Speeding up the process can cut lawyer time and overall legal costs.
  • If business ownership is being settled in a divorce, often it’s better to resolve ownership as soon as possible.
  • Child custody. Long, drawn-out divorces are not good for children.
  • To keep a spouse’s health insurance.

Getting A Legal Separation In Colorado

The process involved with filing for a legal separation isn’t difficult, you just have to know what to do. Getting a professional Colorado Springs family lawyer can make it even more simple, and you can make sure that the legal separation is done correctly.

The first thing that the couple needs to do is file a petition (request) with the court for legal separation. At least one of the spouses must meet the residency requirements of the state. In Colorado, that means living in the state for 91 days at least before they can file for separation. You also must wait for 90 days at least before the court is able to take any action on your case.

The petition for separation must include grounds, or a legal reason, for your request. Since Colorado is a no-fault divorce state, this means that the court will not require either of the spouses to prove any wrongdoing by either spouse. These same rules apply to legal separations.

This requirement can be met by couples by telling the court that their marriage is broken with no chance for a reconciliation.

There is a three-month waiting period, during which the court hopes the couple will be able to negotiate their separation’s terms. Both of the spouses need to agree to all of the terms of property division, support, and custody. If you cannot, then it will be decided for you by the court.

After the separation agreement (court order) has been signed by the judge, both of the spouses are free to live independent lives apart from each other.

Legal Separation To Divorce

Your attorney will draw up all of the requisite documents on your behalf. There are three main steps associated with going from a legal separation to a divorce in the state of Colorado.

1. Eligibility To File

Anyone who is looking to file for legal separation in Colorado Springs, they’ll need to have spent time living in the state for a specified period. In the case of Colorado, you’ll need to have lived in the state for a minimum of 91 days before filing for separation. The overall process of filing for one isn’t very difficult and it’s very similar to filing for a divorce. However, there are three differences to be aware of.

  • When two people get legally separated, they are still considered to be married. While it does typically end up in a divorce, that doesn’t mean it always has to. A lot of couples end up getting separated for a period and find ways to get back together.

2. Changing From Legal Separation To Divorce

Getting your status changed from being legally separated to a legal divorce in Colorado involves filing three different legal forms for Colorado’s family court. You’ll want to discuss the original Decree of Legal separation and properly label all of the forms referencing it.

This is especially true when entering who the respective parties are including; the petitioner, the co-petitioner, and even the respondent.

  • Motion To Convert Decree Of Legal Separation To Decree Of Dissolution

This is the form that is meant to have you declare that you have gone through the six months required by the courts. It means you have gone through the 6 months since the date of your legal separation and that you have notified your spouse of your desire to continue to convert that decree to one of Dissolution.

  • Conversion Of Decree Of Legal Separation To Decree Of Dissolution

This is something that incorporates the provisions of your divorce that are detailed directions in your separation agreement. This includes everything from the child support details to the parenting plan, property and debt agreements, and even spousal maintenance. All of this has been either ordered by the court or agreed upon by both parties.

3. Decree Of Dissolution Of Marriage

This is the form you’ll have to complete to continue. It needs to be completed just as the separation agreement was. As soon as it’s been signed by a judge, it’ll be used as your final decree for your divorce.

If you’ve gone through a legal separation in the state of Colorado, you’ll want to hire a professional family lawyer in the Colorado Springs area to proceed efficiently.


Colorado Springs Divorce Attorney Mary Daugherty offers low-cost divorce if you and your spouse are in basic agreement with the terms of a Colorado divorce I can save you a LOT of money! Give me a call to see if a low-cost divorce is right for you!

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I was very fortunate to have Mary as my attorney. Court is a hard enough place to be. Not only did Mary give me a 100% she also listened to me and that was important. Had a great out come. Thank you!

Carrie Bireland