What Types of Law Does Divorce Matters Practice?

Just from our name, it’s easy to tell that we excel in divorce law, but what other kinds of cases can Divorce Matters handle? We are a law firm specializing in family law. Family law covers a wide variety of different cases including:


Estate Planning

Divisions of Marital Property

An important part of the divorce process in Colorado is figuring out how to divide marital property. The procedure generally involves two steps. First, it must be determined what marital property is. Second, the marital property must be divided equitably

Spousal Maintenance

In Colorado, neither spouse has an automatic right to maintenance. The court may award maintenance only if it finds that the spouse seeking maintenance lacks sufficient property to meet their reasonable needs and, in addition, is either unable to support themselves through appropriate employment or should not be required to seek employment because of child care responsibilities. Divorce Matters has lots of experience in Spousal Maintenance negotiations and our attorneys are the perfect choice to help you!

Child Custody

When children are involved, the divorce process doesn’t end once the final paperwork is filed. With children come often contentious and painful negotiations about and modification of parental rights, parenting time, and custody. Our team has deep experience dealing with child custody and parental rights issues and we believe it is our duty and an imperative to help couples address custody and rights issues in ways that reduce the impact of divorce and protect children in the process.

Child Support

In Colorado, child support is based on strict guidelines dictated by state laws and statutes. The issue of child support is separate and distinct from the issue of parenting time, and child support payments may not be conditioned upon parenting time. Due to these strict laws, it is important to have guidance from an expert attorney throughout the process.

Post Decree Modifications

Have your circumstances changed since your divorce? Have you lost your job? Has your ex-spouse received a salary increase? Did your ex-spouse fail to disclose financial matters during the dissolution of marriage? Once your divorce is finalized, fortunately, not everything in your original separation agreement or parenting plan is set in stone. Courts recognize that circumstances change, and, sometimes, spouses hide income or assets during the divorce process. Depending on the exact circumstances of your case, you may have a variety of options post-decree. In the following sections, we explore your options in modifying maintenance, child support, parenting time, custody, and decision-making, as well as how you can reopen your property division.

Mediation and Arbitration

Mediation and arbitration are perfect options for anyone going through a divorce. Both options allow the partners to take more control in the divorce, as well as keep the process out of court. Not only does Divorce Matters represent clients through mediation and arbitration, but we also have a mediator on staff!

Domestic Violence

Domestic violence happens to people in all classes, statuses, and ranks in life, regardless of age, gender, race, religion, education, profession, or socioeconomic status. The unfortunate reality is that one in four women in the U.S. will experience domestic violence in their lifetime, resulting in an estimated 1.3 million women becoming victims of physical assault by an intimate partner each year.

Contempt of Court

After having gone through a divorce or once you have some orders from the court, you may at some point find yourself on either end of a contempt of court action if one of the parties is not complying with the orders. If you find yourself on either end of a contempt action, Divorce Matters is here to help!

Unbundled Legal Services

Unbundled legal services are the perfect solution for anyone not ready to jump into full-scale representation. With unbundled services, you can hire an attorney at their hourly rate to help you with specific aspects of your legal troubles, like filing paperwork or gathering documents!

Common-Law Marriage

The state of Colorado allows couples to enter into common law marriage. However, the parameters of common law marriage can be hazy and difficult to understand, just like common law divorce


If your case falls under family law, we can help with your appeal!

Prenuptial Agreements

While there are a million things to plan when a couple decides to marry, often the most difficult to discuss with your future partner is the possible need for a prenuptial agreement. While this subject is not the most romantic or exciting part of wedding planning, a couple contemplating marriage in Colorado may need to consider entering into a prenuptial agreement, or a contract before marriage.

Military Divorce

To thank our Military service members, we even offer 10% off of legal fees! This discount is offered to all active and retired service members, veterans, and military spouses.

Thomas Legal Firm

While Divorce Matters only deals in family law, we do have a sister law firm that offers other services. Thomas Law Firm deals with Criminal matters as well as Civil Law matters, including general litigation, civil rights, workers’ compensation, and business defense litigation.

Is There Any Way To Shorten The Mandatory Waiting Period For Divorce?

To answer the question above question, we must first delve into what a mandatory waiting period is. In the state of Colorado, there is a mandatory waiting period of 91 days from the date of joint filing or service on the responding party before a divorce can legally be completed. This waiting period is common in a lot of states and is meant to give people time to consider their situation and whether they want to go through with the divorce. However, this waiting period can also feel frustrating, especially if you already spent a lot of time thinking about your situation before filing or if you feel in danger.

With that being said, there is no way to shorten or avoid this waiting period. It is mandatory for every couple getting divorced in the state of Colorado. However, there are a few things that you can do while waiting for the end of your 91-day waiting period. With the help of an attorney, you can ask the court to issue agreements or court orders during your waiting period. These orders can be helpful if you need specific things from the court. For example, it may be difficult to sell your home before the divorce has gone through, but a court order can help with that.  Additionally, it might be helpful to work on filing all the necessary paperwork during your mandatory waiting period and find common ground with your spouse. Completing both of these tasks will make your divorce process go smoother and quicker once you are able to start proceedings.

The easiest way to deal with the mandatory waiting period is to consult with an attorney to see what they can do for your individual situation. If you have a specific reason for wanting to skip the waiting period, it is important to speak with an attorney. They will be able to tell you what is possible in your particular situation, and if you can work within the waiting period to get what you need. To speak to an attorney today, you can call us at (720)542-6142 or contact us through our website.

Do I Need To Go To Court To Get A Divorce?

If you are considering divorce, you may feel daunted by the legal process. You may even begin to feel anxiety when you start to consider the cost and time court proceedings may require, and the loss of control over the outcome of your case when a judge is calling the shots. However, court is not inevitable, and it isn’t the only solution for divorce proceedings.  

Mediation is one of the options available to you if you want to avoid court and is usually ordered by most Colorado judges before parties will even be able to proceed to trial. Mediation is a process in which a neutral third party, called a mediator, is hired to resolve the case. This process will ensure that both parties have a say in the results and that the outcome is balanced and fair to all parties involved. Additionally, the process is more streamlined, less expensive, and more private than court proceedings would be. If you and your spouse and the mediator can come to an agreement, the agreement will be written into a Memoriam of Understanding, which is then signed by the court. After the Memoriam is signed, it will be incorporated into a more formal and detailed Separation Agreement.   

Arbitration is another possible option to avoid court. Arbitration, just like mediation, is a more private and efficient alternative to court. Both parties need to agree to arbitration before it begins, otherwise, arbitration cannot be ordered. A professional, called an arbiter, will be presented with all the facts and make a final decision in the case. Arbitration is more like court, with the arbiter acting as a sort of judge, however, the process is less public, less expensive, and less time-consuming. Arbitration also offers a more relaxed environment for each party to present their side of the story. After the arbiter has made a final decision, court is no longer an option, as the arbiter’s decision is valid and enforceable by the court.  

Court is more costly than either arbitration or mediation because it will require more of your attorney’s time. This can be especially true if proceedings are contentious and are dragged out. In addition to the cost, you lose the ability to make decisions in your own case. Once the case goes to court, the decision is in the judge’s hands, whether it be a divorce, a child custody issue, or a post-decree issue. Mediation and arbitration allow the involved parties to retain some control and negotiate with the other party. While it is ideal to have more control and keep the case outside of court, it is sometimes unavoidable if you and your spouse cannot come to an agreement. In this case, it is especially important to have a capable and competent attorney by your side to walk you through the court process and tenaciously represent your interests in court.  

In the end, it is possible to avoid court if you and your spouse can come to an agreement on your own or in mediation or arbitration. All three options are less costly, more efficient, and allow you more control over your own situation than if you take proceedings to court. To decide on the best option for you and your circumstances, it is recommended you hire a strong and capable attorney to advise you on your choices and the details of those choices. The right attorney will also help guide you through the entire process no matter what choice you make, whether that be inside or outside the courtroom.  


How Much Will A Divorce Cost Me?

Contrary to popular belief, divorce does not always have to be expensive. One of the biggest influencing factors in the cost of a divorce is the complexity of your specific case. These complexities come in a few different forms, and each essentially affects how much time needs to be spent on a particular case and therefore how expensive that case will be. Some of these things will be within your control, and others won’t – this is why it is important to reach out and schedule an initial consultation with an attorney. In your initial consultation, our attorneys can go over your specific set of circumstances with you, and they will be able to give you an idea of what your specific case might cost and how to manage those costs.


What will affect the cost of my divorce?


As mentioned, there are several main determining factors that will affect the total cost of your divorce. Some of these include:

  1. The amount of assets involved
  2. Whether or not you have children
  3. How contentious (think conflict) your case is

These factors all increase the complexity of your case and therefore increase the total cost.

How you can keep the cost down?


There are a few ways you can help keep the cost down in your case. The most popular way is to utilize our unbundled legal services, which involves having an attorney help with one specific aspect of your case, such as drafting and reviewing documents for you, offering coaching or legal advice, or communicating with other parties, opposing counsel, and the courts. However, this option is not always a good fit, especially if your case has any of the factors listed above that tend to increase costs. Another way to keep costs down is to work on coming to an amicable agreement with your ex through mediation or arbitration. This will save time and money on going to court and is often easier on your emotional well-being in the end as well.


Every case is different, so it important to speak with an attorney to get a better idea of how much your specific situation will cost and what your options might be. Contact Divorce Matters today to set up an initial consultation with one of our many experienced attorneys who can help put you and your family on the path to a successful future after divorce.

What Is Mediation And Does It Apply To My Case?

Mediation is a word you might hear often when learning about divorce, but do you really know what it is?

What is Mediation?

Mediation is a process that most couples in Colorado will go through here in Colorado. In almost all Colorado divorce cases, mediation with be required first thing in your divorce process. The purpose is to try and resolve your case by discussing the issues at hand and hopefully coming up with an outcome that both you and your ex can agree on. Mediation is mandatory in most cases in hopes that a couple can have control over their outcomes and settle their differences before involving the courts. The attorneys from both sides can be present with you at mediation to help advise you.

The mediator is a trained, third-party person that is hired by you and your spouse to go back and forth between you and your ex to facilitate the conversation. They remain completely neutral in hopes of coming to a compromise that is in the best interest of both of you. If mediation is successful and agreements have been made, you and your spouse will sign and submit a Memorandum of Understanding to the Court, which will then be incorporated into a formal, final separation agreement.

If mediation is not successful, and you and your spouse cannot come to an agreement, then the next steps options are scheduling a court hearing or, if both parties agree to it, you can decide to go to Arbitration.

Does mediation apply to you?

The answer is yes because it is required by Colorado law for most divorce cases. The state wants everyone to put forth their best effort in trying to settle issues on their own in hopes that they don’t have to go to court and make the situation even more stressful and drawn out. It can save you and your spouse a lot of money, time, and stress to go to mediation, and allow you to keep the most control over what happens to your future.

We always suggest having an attorney present with you for mediation in case anything is unclear, or you need legal advice. It can be beneficial to have legal representation because they will be able to use their knowledge of the law, while keeping your best interests in mind, to help deliver the best result for you and your future.

Contact us today to speak with one of our many experienced attorneys here at Divorce Matters.

This Is How The Divorce Process Works and How Long It Will Take

When it comes to divorce most would say they want the process to be over as soon as possible so they can move on with their lives. This inevitably leads everyone to ask “how long will it be until I am officially divorced from my spouse?” A great place to start is our Divorce Timeline, which can be found under the Tools tab on our website. However, we also want to give a more general overview of how long the process might take. The specific circumstances and complexity of your case will determine the timeline, but overall, this is what you can expect the process to look like.


When You First File-


Once you have filed a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage with the courts in your county, your spouse must be personally served.  Learn more about what to do if you are the one being served divorce papers.

Once your spouse is served, he or she has 21 days (35 for out of state) to file a response. If you and your spouse both want the divorce and sign a petition jointly, the Service/Response step can be ignored. Your spouse may also agree to waive service if you do not file jointly. Just because you sign jointly does not mean the process is complete, and you will still need to follow the rest of the requirements in the process.


Once Your Ex Is Served-


You have 42 days after the date of filing to set up an initial status conference with the court and submit your financial disclosures. The initial status conference is your first court appearance and is an informal way for both parties and the Court to get on the same page about dates and deadlines in your case. It depends on the county and jurisdiction that you are in as to whether they will schedule a time for your initial status conference automatically once you file, or if you or your attorney have to reach out to the court to schedule your own. The timing for this solely depends on your county’s court and its timeline. You also will need to have your financial disclosures submitted within that 42-day deadline as well.


After Initial Status Conference-


You have the option to file for Temporary Orders, which is only necessary if there is an immediate conflict that must be addressed while your case is ongoing. Temporary Orders can help with decision making, child support or spousal support, or who will live in the marital residence during the divorce process. Temporary orders will be replaced by permanent orders at the end of your case. A temporary orders hearing, which is a separate court date, must be set to decide this and it will extend your case.


Once you’ve had your initial status conference, you and your spouse are then required to attend mediation by the state of Colorado. Everyone who files for divorce in Colorado must attend mediation, with a few exceptions. In rare cases where the parties agree to every issue, it is possible to skip mediation, which would shorten your case. Additionally, you may request mediation be waived in cases of domestic violence.




Mediation is a formal settlement conference where the mediator (whom you hire) assists in trying to reach a full agreement between you and your ex. If mediation is successful, you will leave with a signed or partial settlement agreement. Then your attorneys draft the final agreements and file the documents with the court.


If mediation is not successful, you must either come up with a settlement or prepare to go to trial. If you need to go to trial, this must be scheduled with the court and the timing completely depends on their availability and timeline. This can extend your case; therefore, it is ideal to come up with agreements in mediation or a settlement.




Your divorce will be finalized once a judge issues a decree of dissolution of marriage which then severs the marriage, and you are no longer married.




If a party is not satisfied with the final decision made by the court, then an appeal can be made. There are specific time constraints around appeals, so you will want to speak with your attorney if you wish to appeal any part of your divorce decree.


You also may modify certain orders put in place by the courts if circumstances change after the final agreement has been made. Again, you will want to speak with your attorney if you would like to modify any documents or orders post-divorce.


Overall, it can be difficult to determine the exact length that it will take to finalize your divorce because every situation is different. Your timeline will depend on the specific circumstances and jurisdiction of your case.

If you have questions about your particular situation or would like to speak with an attorney today, contact us.

How Do I Pick the Right Attorney For Me?

One of the first questions you might ask yourself when you are searching for an attorney is “how do I know which attorney I’ll work the best with?” or “who will align with me and get me the best results in my case?” This is a very important question to consider because if you and your attorney don’t align then you might not be satisfied with their service or your end result. We never want that to be the case. Here are a few criteria to consider when deciding what attorney to hire to make sure that you and your attorney will be the best fit together.


Personality –

One of the most important factors to consider when deciding on hiring an attorney is how their personality would work with yours. When you are going through a divorce, you will end up sharing some of the most important and private details of your life with your attorney. Finding someone who complements you and can be a good partner is a key component to a successful attorney-client relationship.

Situation –

Another very important factor to consider when finding the right attorney is your specific situation. Every attorney has their strengths and areas of family law they practice more than others. If your case is very complex, you might look for an attorney who has more experience handling complex cases. On the other hand, if your situation is a very emotional one, it might be best to find a more empathetic attorney that you feel you can talk to and connect with for support. Another example would be if there is a lot of contention between you and your ex; in this case, you might be looking for a more aggressive attorney that will fight for you in times that get tense. Every situation is different, therefore it is key to find an attorney that will represent you in the way you need to be represented to achieve the most successful result in the end.

Cost –

Lastly, one thing to always keep in mind is how much you can afford when hiring an attorney. Of course, this always depends on each individual case and what you need the attorney to help you with. One of the most important factors that can affect the cost of your case is how contentious the separation is. If you and your ex can agree on most things through mediation, this will keep costs down compared to a case that goes to court. Another factor is what services you need legal help with. In some cases, you may only need unbundled legal services, but other cases will require full representation.


Finding an attorney with the right mix of personality, experience, and cost to help you with your divorce case is an important step in the divorce process. At Divorce Matters, we understand the importance of this decision. We match our clients with our attorneys based on all of these considerations, to ensure we deliver the best possible legal representation to every client.

If you’d like to get to know more about our attorneys visit their profiles here.

Divorce Mediation or Arbitration?

Some people want to avoid going to court, and we can’t blame them. Testifying in court is stressful, and court proceedings are also public. Do you really want to air your dirty laundry for the enjoyment of other people?

Interest in alternative dispute resolution (ADR) has increased over the past few years, and two of the principal ADR techniques are mediation and arbitration. As experienced divorce lawyers, we have experience with both mediation and arbitration in Denver. But is either right for you?

Mediation””Like Negotiation but with Help

Mediation is a popular ADR technique for couples looking to reach an agreement so that they can speed up their divorce. If you can agree on child custody, child support, and the division of marital property, then you can get divorced much quicker than if you need a judge to decide these issues.

This is where mediation comes in. During mediation, you meet with a neutral person, called the mediator. He or she listens to the dispute and helps each side hear where the other is coming from. The mediator is not a judge. She does not pick a winner or loser or assign blame for the divorce in any way. Instead, she helps facilitate discussion so that the couple can reach a compromise.

Once you reach an agreement, you write it up in a settlement agreement and submit it to the court. Even reaching agreement on a few issues can streamline a messy divorce.

Arbitration””Like a Court Trial, but Private

Another form of alternative dispute resolution is arbitration. It is more like a trial than mediation. In arbitration, you submit evidence to an arbitrator (or panel of arbitrators). The arbitrator is often a former judge or an experienced attorney, and he will listen to the evidence. You can have witnesses testify and submit documents, just as you would in court. In the end, the arbitration will decide the issue by issuing an award in favor of one party.

One advantage of arbitration is privacy. The proceedings are closed. You ultimately need a judge to confirm the award, but the judge will not hear testimony on the contested issues. If you have a high net worth or want to maintain privacy, then arbitration could be a benefit.

Experienced Denver Divorce Lawyers

ADR is not appropriate in all situations, but it might be just what you are looking for in your divorce. To discuss your options, please contact Divorce Matters today. We offer affordable consultations, which you can schedule by calling 720-580-6745 or submitting an online message.

Mistakes to Avoid During Mediation

Not every divorce is bitter and filled with hate. Some couples actually respect each other and want to end their marriage in an amicable manner. For this reason, many people choose mediation. Mediation allows both parties to come to mutual agreements based on compromise and negotiation.

Mediation allows the couple””not a judge””to choose the terms of their divorce. This allows both parties to get what they want, to some degree, instead of a court decision making everyone unhappy. The couple works out the issues of their divorce with help from a divorce mediator. A mediator is a neutral third party who is there to answer questions and move along the process. Mediation is a healthy alternative to an expensive and lengthy court battle, especially when children are involved.

Like most processes, though, mediation needs to be done the right way. If you come into it with the wrong attitude, you’re only going to delay the process and make things worse. At this point, going to court will be your only option, and this will mean more money out of pocket. You can avoid this fate by taking note of these common mistakes.

Avoid These Common Mistakes

Mediation is supposed to be a healthy alternative to a courtroom divorce. But it’s not easy. You need to do your part to make it work. The first thing to remember is to keep an open mind. Don’t be difficult. Come ready to listen to the other spouse and the mediator.

Many couples make the mistake of coming into a mediation session ready for battle. You need to be able to communicate in an effective manner as well as negotiate and compromise. If you come into mediation ready to argue and not willing to budge on anything, you’re setting yourself up for disappointment because mediation is not going to work.

You want to keep things civil. Avoid bad-mouthing the other spouse or calling him or her names. This is not a good way to settle on important issues.

If children are involved, focus on their needs, not yours. The goal is to ensure the best interests of the children are in mind. Children thrive when they have both parents in their lives. It’s selfish to think of your needs only or try to take your children away from the other parent. Try to come up with plans that benefit everyone involved.

Another common mistake is showing up to mediation unprepared. Ideally, you should have several plans or solutions in place. Don’t just show up and expect to wing it. The other spouse will likely have concerns and you will need to be prepared to address them.

Let Our Lakewood Divorce Lawyers Help You Today

Mediation can be useful in helping move a divorce along and help you achieve a favorable outcome. However, it needs to be done the right way or it can make a situation even worse.

Whether you’re considering mediation or other options for your divorce, get trusted advice from the team at Divorce Matters. Our experienced Denver mediation professionals can help you achieve the results you desire. To learn more, contact us today at (720) 408-6595.

Will I Need Post-Divorce Mediation?

Mediation is a tool that divorcing couples can use to come to an amicable separation. And as much as many people would like to never see their spouse again after divorce, it is often necessary. In fact, it’s not too uncommon for couples to have to seek mediation post-divorce. This is especially true for couples who have children.

  1. Child support modification. In Colorado, a substantial change in the circumstances surrounding child support can lead to a need to modify the child support agreement. This could happen, for example, if one parent’s income becomes substantially higher, or if one parent loses his or her job. If the two parents are having trouble renegotiating a child support arrangement, mediation can be useful in determining a fair reassessment.
  2. Child custody modification. Changes in circumstances can also result in the need to modify a child custody agreement. The courts always attempt to create a child custody situation that fits the best interests of the child. If your lives have changed and the children are suffering for it, and you and your ex can’t come to an agreement, you might consider mediation for a custody modification. It’s cheaper than taking it to court and generally much less contentious.
  3. Spousal support modification. Unless there is a specific provision in your divorce decree stating otherwise, spousal support (also known by its old-timey name, alimony) can be modified if there is a substantial and continuing change in the circumstances of your lives that renders the original amount unfair. As in the above cases, mediation provides a less expensive alternative to litigation for you and your ex-spouse.

Denver family law attorneys who understand the impacts of divorce on the whole family and are ready to assist you.