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.

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.

Ready For Mediation? Tips For Mothers Mediating Child Custody Disputes

Divorce is a stressful process that becomes significantly more so if you have kids. No parent wants to be away from their child for any longer than they have to, but when divorce happens, there’s really no avoiding the problem of custody. But there are ways to help alleviate that problem; one of those is through child custody mediation.

The point of mediation is to have both parents work out mutually beneficial custody arrangements and parenting time schedules that are in the best interests of the children. Mediation is almost always required in child custody disputes in court, but can also be entered into voluntarily before a case is ever filed. Mediation is one of the best ways to come up with a plan that works for you, your spouse and most importantly, the little ones. After all, why endure the stress of fighting it out in court only to have a judge impose a schedule upon the parents and children, when you can do it yourselves, save money and end up with a schedule that is actually workable for everyone involved?

However, if parents are prone to arguing, or if one parent has a more dominant personality, mediation can be intimidating if you don’t know what to expect. But don’t let fear of the unknown drive you away from mediation; even in contentious custody battles, mediation has a lot of benefits and can help reduce or relieve the stresses of fighting for your kids. Here are some tips to help you get ready for custody mediation:

  • Choose a mediator who is a reputable family law attorney that has been doing mediation for at least a few years. There is no license to be a mediator, so anyone can put themselves out there as one. Always check qualifications, such as asking if the mediator has taken a 40 hour mediation course, and make sure they are family law mediators who have dealt with parent and child issues before. An experienced family law mediator can be effective and convincing about the reality of the situation if the other parent is being unreasonable.
  • Preparation Is Key

    Whether you have a lawyer or are going on your own, come with your schedule and calendar that you need for your and the other parent’s work schedule. Know the dates that school starts, when holidays are, when spring, summer and winter break are and what you would like to do during those times (want to visit grandparents? Teach your kids to ski? Etc.)

  • In addition to the calendar dates, have an idea of activities that you, the other parent and the children have on a daily basis. Does a child go to soccer after school? Piano lessons on Wednesday? Do you always have to stay late at work on Wednesday, but have flexibility on Fridays? Have tentative daily schedules and reminders written down so you can plan accordingly.
  • Do you or the other parent have relatives or good friends that live nearby that want to be helpful with the children? A court cannot order grandma to pick up the kids and take them to swimming practice on Thursdays, but if grandma wants to be a part of it, you can put that in the mediated agreement. Can the kids, if they are old enough, stay at home alone after school if they check in with the neighbor who works from home? Speak to friends, neighbors and family beforehand to offer additional solutions to common parenting scheduling problems.
  • Enter mediation with an open mind and a calm demeanor. Even if the other parent is being unreasonable, always stay calm and collected during mediation. Accept the fact that you cannot control what the other parent says or does in mediation; you can only control your reaction. Getting upset will never help your situation. If you do get upset, it’s okay, but ask for a 10-minute break and get some fresh air to help you calm down.
  • Understand that it might take a few sessions to work out an agreement and plan. If you do not come to an agreement on the first session, know that you did not fail. Sometimes, people need time to reflect and may come back to another mediated session with some new insights into what really matters and what needs to be done. As they say, hindsight is 20/20 ”“ an unsuccessful first session helps both parties identify ways to move forward.
  • Take the time to understand that when parents do not live together, neither parent is going to get as much time with the child(ren) as they would like. Think about the situation from the child’s point of view. It’s your job as a parent to do what is best for the kids, even if that means you might not get to see them as often as you’d like.

The Denver family law attorneys at Divorce Matters provide mediation services for divorcing couples in Colorado.