Denver Divorce Attorney
Dedicated Denver Divorce Lawyer Ready To Help You
The divorce process can often be a deceptively complex ordeal. Due to the sensitive issues involved, even an amicable divorce can quickly become strained and contentious.
Retaining an experienced legal professional with a logical, results-driven approach to all matters of family law can be invaluable during these proceedings.
If you are facing a divorce, please contact the experienced Denver divorce attorneys of Plog & Stein, P.C.
We are dedicated to helping you through your stressful situation with your goals and future in mind. Since 1999, we’ve helped thousands of clients throughout the Denver metropolitan area with their divorce and other legal issues.
We understand you only get one chance to make sure this issue gets solved right. Let us put our years of dedicated experience to work for you.
Denver Divorce Attorney Resources
- What are the Grounds for Divorce in Colorado?
- How Long Do I Have to Live in Colorado to Get a Divorce?
- Am I Eligible for a Divorce or Legal Separation?
- How Can Our Denver Divorce Attorneys Help With Your Case?
- Temporary Orders and Divorce
- Contact Us
Why Choose Plog & Stein, P.C.?
At Plog & Stein, P.C., we are devoted to providing exceptional family law legal services to Colorado residents. Our law firm has decades of combined legal experience dealing with all types of family law cases, striving for the best results in every case. We understand the emotional and mental strain a divorce can have on a family. Our only goal is to ease these burdens as we work for the best possible outcomes during this trying time. We do this by using our unique set of skills to diligently advocate for you, both in and out of the courtroom. We are dedicated to providing:
- A thorough analysis of your case and the elements necessary in order to attain a fair outcome.
- A custom, intelligent strategy tailored for your unique situation.
- An accessible team of attorneys who provide prompt and open lines of communication at all times.
- Sound legal advice and resources at each step in your divorce case.
What are the Grounds for Divorce in Colorado?
It is important to note any prerequisites or laws in place before petitioning for the dissolution of your marriage.
This can include factors such as Grounds for divorce. Colorado is a “no-fault” state, meaning that a spouse does not necessarily need a justifiable reason to seek dissolution of their marriage beyond stating that it is “irretrievably broken.” If one spouse wants a divorce it will happen.
How Long Do I Have to Live in Colorado to Get a Divorce?
Colorado maintains a strict residency requirement for those seeking a divorce. At least one of the spouses must have resided in the state for at least 91 days before the initial dissolution proceedings begin. Before filing a divorce, the Denver divorce lawyers at Plog & Stein, P.C. undertake a meticulous evaluation of your circumstances to ensure that any and all state requirements and regulations are met before proceeding with your dissolution. We understand the seriousness of dissolution, so we aim to get to know you and your needs, in detail before, formulating a plan for effectively meeting your legal objectives.
Am I Eligible for a Divorce or Legal Separation?
In some cases, the ending of a marriage through a divorce may not be the best option for you and your spouse.
A legal separation may be a more viable alternative for your circumstances. Some of the most common reasons spouses opt for a legal separation instead of divorce include:
- Personal or religious beliefs disapproving of formal divorce
- Retention of healthcare benefits
- Unique financial circumstances
- Possibility of reconciling the relationship at a future date
Filing for a legal separation differs from divorce in that it does not formally terminate your marriage. Both partners are still considered spouses in the eyes of the law and may not remarry until they’re officially divorced, but they now bear the benefit of being financially independent of each other. It should be noted that once a decree of legal separation enters, either party can convert it to divorce after the passing of 6 months.
However, from a procedural standpoint, this option requires much of the same work as a divorce. All relevant matters must be addressed and properly resolved before separation is finalized. This potentially includes matters of custody, support, spousal maintenance, and property division. There may be other benefits or drawbacks associated with choosing one route over the other.
In these circumstances, our knowledgeable divorce attorneys in Denver can help provide valuable insight into both proceedings. We care about your needs and, after evaluating your case, we make sure to recommend the best path for you to establish your independence.
Our goal is to make the dissolution process run as smoothly as possible – and if that includes opting for a legal separation instead of a formal dissolution, we will explore that option for you with no hesitation.
Hire the Right Team for a Contested Divorce
Ideally, people want their Colorado divorces to be settled in an amicable fashion, with all issues resolved in a straightforward manner. However, that is not always the case.
Though many cases settle before ever getting to a final court hearing, most divorces still come with a level of contention as the parties work through the issues in their dissolution proceedings. In any case, there are major subjects that will either need to be agreed upon or will ultimately be decided by a judge, including:
- Division of marital home and debt
- Custody issues and parenting time
- Child support
- Alimony (spousal support)
The resolution of these issues can have a significant impact on your financial future and the well-being of your children. As such, we understand what it takes to effectively resolve each aspect of your case.
We take our job and your case very seriously. At Plog & Stein, our Denver divorce lawyers understand the value of skilled legal representation in both contested and uncontested divorces.
How Can Our Denver Divorce Attorneys Help With Your Case?
Divorce, also known as a “dissolution of marriage,” is the legal process for ending a marriage. The process can be a long and tumultuous endeavor that requires large amounts of negotiating, evidence-gathering, and paperwork before a final resolution. While many cases end in a settlement, others proceed to a contested trial in front of a family court. Our law firm prepared for either scenario.
The team at Plog & Stein, P.C. understands the hard work involved in a dissolution of marriage. We tailor our approach to advocate for you regarding all aspects of your divorce, including:
- The legal arguments and procedural requirements needed.
- Exceptional negotiating skills during a contested divorce.
- Division of simple and complex marital assets, such as real estate or business holdings.
- Addressing any concerns for high-asset or high-net worth divorces.
- Determining the terms for child custody, support, and visitation rights.
- Issues related to military divorce.
- Protecting your rights related to spousal maintenance (alimony), regardless of which side of the equation you’re on.
- Thorough, prepared, and experienced representation at trial.
We understand that each of our clients has varying needs for their specific situation. With each case, we strive to minimize your stress as we tackle the various financial or child-related issues you are facing.
Litigating Your Divorce Case in Court
Each member of the Plog & Stein, P.C. legal team is an experienced litigator, with years of courtroom trial experience ready to use for our clients. Our firm prides itself on seeking the best possible outcome in each case. Sometimes those outcomes can only be obtained through final, permanent orders hearing in front of a judge.
Courtroom litigation is serious business and requires not only a great grasp of the law, rules of evidence, and courtroom procedures, but also the ability to think and speak quickly when presenting arguments. When your day in court comes, having the right lawyer by your side increases the chances of obtaining the legal outcome you desire.
In most contested divorce cases ending in a court hearing, there will be several months that pass between the time the case is filed and the final court date. Typically, a case will take 5 to 8 months from start to finish, depending on which jurisdiction it is in.
From the outset of each divorce case our firm handles, the assigned attorney will begin assessing and strategizing to determine what will be needed to present your arguments for that final hearing. Given the various divorce issues which can arise (property division, spousal maintenance, child custody, and child support), a great deal of preparation will be needed.
The first step will generally be to gather documents and other documentary evidence (which can include emails, photographs, text messages, account statements, and more) needed to support your claims as to each divorce issue.
Determinations will also need to be made regarding whether an expert or experts, will be needed regarding any of the various issues. If income or earning ability is an issue tied to maintenance or child support, a vocational evaluator might be useful. If the parties own a business or interest in a business, a CPA skilled in valuing business interests might be needed.
Sometimes a forensic accountant is needed to deal with hidden or missing assets or funds. Each expert will prepare a written report, which ultimately also becomes part of the evidence gathered for trial.
Beyond gathering evidence, your attorney will apprise you of the steps, rules, and procedures tied into preparing the gathered evidence for trial. This will include disclosing witnesses, both lay and expert, several weeks out.
Documentary evidence, generally called “exhibits,” must also be marked, tabulated, and exchanged before trial, with expert witness reports being due a few days after witnesses are declared.
Preparation will also include your attorney preparing lines of argument, outlines, and witness testimony. Preparation of testimony is important, particularly for our clients.
We want to make sure each witness we call to the stand is aware of what we may be asking and how to answer. This includes preparing clients for what to expect at their final divorce hearing. Good communication between attorney and client is key.
There are many deadlines to meet and steps to be taken along the way leading up to trial. People often ask whether they really need a divorce attorney.
Given the gravity of the stakes in any divorce case, coupled with the intricacy, detail, and formality required to prepare, it just makes sense to use the services of a lawyer when taking your case to trial. At Plog & Stein, P.C., we pride ourselves on our trial preparation, which is key to obtaining favorable outcomes in the courtroom.
Of equal significance is having the ability to honestly and realistically assess each case, with the goal of making sure our clients are fully informed as to their best options, mapped up with the realities they face at trial regarding each contested issue.
What Evidence is Needed in a Divorce?
Our lawyers will also do a comprehensive assessment to determine what evidence or experts may be needed for the purposes of settling or litigating your final, contested divorce issues. We regularly work with custody, real estate, business valuation, or occupational experts to make sure your evidence is presented to the court in a persuasive and admissible fashion.
Under Colorado law, both spouses are required to present financial disclosures within 42 days after the divorce petition is served. Some financial evidence may include:
- Income tax returns
- Pay stubs
- Sworn financial affidavit
While some cases are simple and amicable, others may be quite complex, involving a whole array of topics. The skilled Denver divorce lawyers at Plog & Stein, P.C. can help mitigate this taxing process. We understand that most people want their divorce to be amicable and stress-free.
At the same time, we recognize clients are also looking for strong advocates to fight for their rights both in and out of the courtroom. Regardless of which path your case takes, our law firm will work toward helping you move onto the next chapter of your life with your dignity and rights intact. Nothing matters more than the future for you and your family. We are both proud and honored to help clients through these troubling times.
Your Divorce Hearing
Most contested divorce hearings will take a half-day or a full day to conduct, though multiple days may be needed in the most complex of cases. The end result of the months of preparation is a carefully orchestrated presentation put together by your legal practitioner, with input and help from you along the way.
At the hearing, the contested divorce attorney’s objective is to present the prepared evidence, testimony, and facts in a manner designed to persuade the court to order a resolution most favorable to the client. One can liken a court hearing to the telling of a story constrained by rules and formalities which, if not followed, may limit the content of the story the judge will hear.
The actual hearing will generally follow a routine order, which begins with the exchange of exhibits and the court dispensing with any preliminary matters. The actual trial will ultimately begin with each lawyer making an opening argument, followed by the Petitioner presenting his or her case first.
Presentation primarily entails witnesses testifying as to the facts, circumstances, events, and tangible evidence for which they are called. Each witness will go through direct examination, cross-examination, and redirect. Once the Petitioner has presented his or her case, the Respondent proceeds.
When testimony and evidence are concluded, each side may present a closing argument, to sum up the evidence and take the last shot at persuading the court. When done, the court will make its ruling on the issues, which may happen that day, or at a later scheduled time.
The trial and courtroom experience the divorce lawyers at Plog & Stein, P.C. bring to the equation allows us to navigate our hearings in a concise, professional, and effective manner. Understanding the law and what the judge is looking for is paramount.
Though we truly hope your case settles before court, rest assured our lawyers will be prepared to litigate your issues if need be. Whether your case concludes through settlement or that final hearing, our only goal is to help you reach your objectives.
Is There a Court Fee for Filing Divorce?
Pursuant to Colorado statute, there is a $230 fee required for filing a divorce. This fee is paid for essentially all the case. When the case if filed by your divorce attorney, the firm will bear the initial cost from the state, which will then be passed onto you through billing. Just as there is a cost to file a divorce, there is also a cost to respond. Specifically, the response fee set forth in statute is $116. Likewise, this will also initially be billed to your attorney. There are also fees charged by the courts for filing motions for modification of orders, whether for child issues or child support. Specifically, the fee is $105. Beyond the statutory filing fees, most courts in the Denver area require attorneys to file documents or court pleadings electronically, through a state system called ICCES. Sadly, each filing with the court will bring an ICCES fee of somewhere between $6 and $13 depending on the document(s) filed.
Temporary Orders and Divorce
Though the dissolution of any marriage involves resolving the major issues related to marital property, children, and support, the Colorado statute recognizes that people often need relief from the court right out of the gate.
Given that final orders may not come until after a court trial, many months down the road, it’s not uncommon for people to need temporary orders in place to help them while their case is pending. C.R.S. 14-10-108 allows for the court to enter temporary orders regarding custody and parenting time, alimony, and use of a marital property.
We believe that obtaining appropriate orders early on in your case, particularly as relates to your children or support, can have an impact on the final outcome down the road.
The statute also offers protections immediately upon the filing and service of divorce papers, including a mandatory injunction prohibiting the disposal of marital property, the hiding of assets, or removing the children from the state while the case is at issue.
With each case, our experienced divorce lawyers in Denver will address whatever temporary needs you may have and will do what we can to help you maintain, or obtain, a workable status quo while you go through the process.
In addressing the temporary needs of our clients, we look to make sure their rights are protected and options are preserved. Obtaining quality legal protection from the beginning affords clients the comfort and peace of mind that comes with knowing they will have a legal advocate behind them each step of the way.
Schedule a Consultation With Our Denver Divorce Lawyers
If you are contemplating a dissolution or a legal separation, contact the experienced Denver family legal issues lawyers at Plog & Stein, P.C. We understand that a seemingly basic, straightforward process can quickly turn complicated and contentious.
With our experience, knowledge, and dedication to your needs, we aim to fight for the most favorable resolution for you and your family.
Remember, you only get one shot to solve this legal matter right. Contact our family law firm today via our online form or calling us for a confidential consultation. We are here to help protect your future and your best interests.