How is Spousal Support Calculated in Colorado?


Many divorcing spouses in Denver may be eligible to receive alimony or spousal support, which in Colorado is called maintenance. In this video, divorce lawyer Kathlyn Laraway explains the alimony laws in Colorado and offers insight into the differences between temporary maintenance and permanent maintenance. If you are curious about whether you or your spouse is eligible for alimony, or if you need to enforce alimony orders post-decree or modify spousal support, speak to one of the attorneys at Divorce Matters®.

Video Transcription:

There’s two types of maintenance: there’s temporary maintenance and then there’s maintenance that is awarded at permanent orders. Temporary maintenance is going to be maintenance that is specifically awarded during the divorce to go until the end of the divorce to get one party through the divorce proceedings.

Permanent maintenance is maintenance that is awarded at permanent orders. It may be for specific lengths of time, say five years. It may be from the life, the rest of the person’s life, that’s a little less common, however. In Colorado, we just have a statute that just came into play in January of 2014 which determines a maintenance formula for both the amount of maintenance that should be awarded and that length of time that maintenance should be awarded.

Depending on the length of the marriage, there’s a very specific guideline that the judge can look at for how long the marriage should be. Generally, when you’re looking at a 20-year marriage, you’re looking at a term of about 10 years of maintenance. If you’re looking at a shorter-term marriage like a six-year marriage, you might be looking at more about two and a half years of maintenance and not quite three. It goes up slightly with each year you get a little more up to half. To schedule a consultation with one of our attorneys, visit

Divorce Matters® is a Denver Colorado divorce attorney law firm. We provide information and services including the divorce process through the courts, division of marital property, assets as well as debts and parental rights regarding biological and adopted children.

Our highly-accomplished divorce and family law attorneys practice throughout Colorado, including:

Adams County (Arvada, Aurora, Brighton, Thornton, Westminster); Arapahoe County (Aurora, Centennial, Cherry Hills Village, Englewood, Greenwood Village, Littleton); Boulder County; Broomfield County; Denver County; Douglas County (Castle Rock, Highlands Ranch, Lone Tree, Parker); Elbert County (Elizabeth, Kiowa); and Jefferson County (Arvada, Golden, Lakewood, Morrison, Wheat Ridge).