There are many misconceptions about divorce, especially when it comes to matters like mediation, alimony, and child custody. Here are some of the most common myths about divorce in Colorado.
Myth Number One
Mediation Is a Waste of Time, and Only Delays the Divorce
Many Colorado residents assume that mediation is a complete waste of time, and will accomplish nothing. They assume that mediation will only involve more arguing, and will only prolong the divorce. That is not true at all. Very often, mediation is an excellent way to resolve a divorce, without having to go to court. In fact, in Colorado, it is recommendable that persons considering divorce, use mediation to come to a mutually acceptable agreement on all matters related to the divorce, including alimony, child support, child custody and other matters, without involving a judge.
Myth Number Two
I Am Much More Likely to Get a Better Divorce Settlement If I Go to Court
One of the reasons why many persons don’t take mediation so seriously is that they believe that going to court will increase their chances of a hefty divorce settlement. Very often, this kind of thinking is the direct result of bad advice.
Going to court doesn’t necessarily mean that you will get a much better divorce settlement. On the contrary, you may find that you end up with the same kind of settlement that you would have gained through mediation, or possibly, even a lower settlement. When you go to court, the battle lines are drawn with your spouse and his attorney. That means that things could get very vicious and ugly, and there is no way to predict what will happen in court. A trial in court can drag out, can be messy, and can traumatize your children.
Myth Number Three
The Mother Always Gets the Kids
Questions of child custody in Colorado are no longer as cut- and- dry as they used to be. Earlier, an overwhelming majority of all custody cases were settled in favor of the mother. To a certain extent, this continues to be true. However, in Colorado, the judges are looking at the best interests of the child, and are finding that a more shared parenting arrangement in which both of the parents have equal custody and parenting time, could be in the better interests of the child.
These joint custody arrangements can be challenging to implement logistically, because they can involve joint physical custody of the child. However, in those cases, where the parents get along well, have respect for each other and are willing to set aside any differences to work for the mutual benefit of their children, joint custody arrangements are actually found to work better than sole-custody arrangements. Of course, all of this depends on individual cases, but there is no longer any hard –and- fast rule that it is the mother who will end up with the custody of the children.
Myth Number Four
The Child Will Decide Which Parent He Wants to Live with
In the case of older children, the judge may decide to have a discussion with a child about his preferences regarding the parent that he wants to live with. However in many cases, judge will make a decision on child custody taking into account the best interests of the child, that includes a number of factors, without involving the children.
Myth Number Five
I cheated on my wife, and this will impact my divorce settlement.
Whether you are the party who cheated on the spouse or the spouse who got cheated on will have very little impact on your divorce settlement. Under Colorado’s no-fault divorce laws, your spouse can get a divorce without having to provide a reason for the divorce. All that your spouse has to prove is that the marriage is irretrievably broken, and in fact, it is highly recommended that reasons like adultery not be introduced into the courtroom at all. They are deemed invalid. Consequently, questions of who cheated on who will have very little impact, if any, on your divorce settlement.
This article is not legal or financial advice. You should contact a lawyer, accountant and/or financial professional in your state to discuss the specifics or your case and applicable laws.