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Common Misconceptions About Divorce & Family Law

Attorneys at Law Timlin & Rye, P.C. May 3, 2024

Family law and divorce proceedings are challenging yet critically important processes. For residents of Colorado, state laws can either smooth the path ahead or add unexpected difficulties.  

Therefore, anyone considering or going through a divorce, child custody dispute, or any other family law matter should be as informed as possible. Misconceptions can lead to surprises and uncertainties down the road.  

Our goal at Attorneys at Law Timlin & Rye, P.C. is not just to represent you through your family law case but also to arm you with essential knowledge that will guide informed decisions.  

Below, we unravel nine common myths often believed by those facing familial legal issues in Colorado. Our seasoned family law attorneys are here to clarify, educate, and support you through your questions, concerns, and misconceptions. 

Myth 1: Child Support Is Not Subject to Modification 

Surprisingly, many believe that once a child support order is in place, it's set in stone. In reality, child support orders can be modified under specific conditions.  

If there's a substantial change in either parent's income, or the care demands for the child have significantly altered, this could warrant a revision of the support payments. 

Myth 2: Marital Fault Affects Property Division 

Colorado is a "no-fault" divorce state, meaning that marital misconduct is generally not a factor in property division. The focus is on equitable distribution, which may not necessarily mean equal division but what the court deems as fair under the specific circumstances. 

Myth 3: Moms Always Gets Custody of the Children 

Historically, moms were more likely to get custody, but Colorado law is now gender-neutral. The court's primary concern is the child's best interests, considering factors such as the child's relationship with each parent, the living situation, and each parent's ability to provide for the child's needs. 

Myth 4: Prenuptial Agreements Are Only for the Rich 

While prenups often protect high-value assets, they're not just for the wealthy. A prenuptial agreement can be vital in safeguarding premarital assets, family inheritances, or managing significant debts for anyone, regardless of wealth status. Anyone with assets to protect or specific rights to maintain should consider a prenup. 

Myth 5: DIY Divorce Is Always Easier and More Cost-Effective 

Although do-it-yourself divorce options seem cost-effective upfront, they can lead to complications and costlier errors down the line. A divorce attorney provides invaluable experience and skills, ensuring all legal and financial aspects are thoroughly addressed. 

Myth 6: Spousal Maintenance Will Always Be Awarded to the Lower-Earning Spouse 

While spousal maintenance might be necessary to maintain a spouse's standard of living post-divorce, it's not a given. The court examines multiple factors, including the length of the marriage, each party's income, and the standard of living during the marriage, before making a decision on spousal maintenance. 

Myth 7: Changing Locks on the Home Keeps a Spouse Out of the House 

Locking a spouse out of the marital home is not necessarily legal in Colorado. Regardless of whose name is on the deed or lease, each spouse has a right to reside there until a formal custody or property division is ordered by the court. 

Myth 8: Divorce Always Ends in Litigation 

While some divorces do end up in court, many are resolved through mediation or collaboration outside of the courtroom. A skilled family law attorney can often help you find a resolution that doesn't require the time and expense of litigation. 

After unpacking these common misconceptions, it's clear that being well-informed and seeking legal counsel is necessary. Family law is complicated, and the stakes are high when it comes to the well-being of your family and your future. Our experience with Colorado family law empowers us to offer personalized guidance and representation for each unique case. 

Myth 9: Legal Separation Is the Same as Divorce 

Many people think legal separation is just another term for divorce, but the two are distinctly different in Colorado. Legal separation allows couples to live apart and make formal arrangements regarding assets, custody, and support while remaining legally married. This can be an attractive option for those who, for personal, religious, or financial reasons, wish to avoid divorce. Unlike divorce, after a legal separation, parties are not free to remarry unless they proceed to convert the separation into a divorce.

Seek Trusted Legal Support Today 

The family law in Colorado is nuanced, and these misconceptions are just the tip of the iceberg. If you're in the Denver area, Adams County, Arapahoe County, Jefferson County, or Douglas County, we encourage you to reach out to Attorneys at Law Timlin & Rye, P.C. for a consultation.  

We are fully committed to providing you not only with top-tier legal representation but also with the peace of mind that comes from comprehensive understanding and effective communication. 

The decision to dissolve a marriage or handle any family law matter is often heavy-hearted. Our mission is to lighten the legal burden and help families turn to the next chapter of their lives with confidence. 

Make informed decisions. Protect your rights. Understand the law. Take the first step toward a secure legal outcome and a more hopeful tomorrow. Connect with us today.