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Dividing property in a Colorado divorce settlement

Couples who file for divorce in Colorado may have their marital property equitably distributed between the two of them.

When it comes time to distribute property in a Colorado divorce case, emotions may get heated. It can be difficult for people to part with certain items, assets and property upon terminating a marriage. While some couples are able to divide the marital property on their own through mediation or collaborative divorce, there are some people who must entrust the fate of their property to the court.

Distribution of property

Colorado follows an equitable distribution of property model when deciding who is entitled to what in a divorce settlement. Rather than have all marital property separated exactly in half like the community property model, the judge presiding over the case will divide marital property according to what he or she deems fair. Needless to say that the final outcome will vary depending on the discretion of the court-appointed judge.

A look at the circumstances

According to Colorado legislation, there are a number of factors that a judge may consider when making his or her final decision. These factors include the following:

  • The economic needs and circumstances of each party at the time of the divorce.
  • The extent to which each party contributed to the acquisition of the property.
  • The value of the martial property.

Not all property is labeled as marital and is eligible to be divided in a divorce settlement. Some items and assets may be considered separate and could then stay in the possession of the original owner. Any property that is owned by either party prior to becoming married is known as separate property. For example, if one party owned a piece of property and the title remained in his or her name during the entirety of the marriage, the judge may order that property to stay in the sole possession of that person. Furthermore, if one party receives a gift from a third party or an inheritance, he or she may be able to keep the entire value of that gift.

If the separate property is mixed with marital property, then the property could lose its separate status and then be divided in the divorce settlement.

Till death do us part

When people decide to file for divorce in Colorado, they may want to enlist the assistance of a knowledgeable family attorney. Going through a divorce can be extremely emotional, which can make it difficult to make the important decisions that must be made during this hard time. A lawyer may be able to answer your questions and help you get everything you are entitled to in the settlement.