Ending a Colorado Common Law Marriage with a Marital Settlement Agreement - Marrison Family Law

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Ending a Colorado Common Law Marriage with a Marital Settlement Agreement

Thursday, 16 September 2010

blog-logoIn the state of Colorado, there are many couples who are married by the “common law” but there are no specific laws that cover this kind of marriage.  The only way to prove a common law marriage exists is to state to the court that you live together and that you are known in public as husband and wife.   However, just like a traditional marriage, when a common law marriage ends, it requires a marital settlement agreement.

Since getting divorced from a Colorado common law marriage requires the couple to appear in a Colorado family court, it is mandatory that residency requirements are met.  This means that the couple must reside in Colorado for a minimum of 90 days for the court to establish jurisdiction over the case.

Once a Petition is filed with the district clerk’s office for Dissolution of Marriage, the next step is to draft a Marital Settlement Agreement that you can both agree on.  Also known as a marital dissolution agreement, this document must be signed and notarized by both parties.  This will show the court that you agree on the terms of the divorce and will not require further mediation.

When the court has filed this document, a case will be created with a docket number, and you will be called to appear in court on a specific date.  At this court appearance, both parties will be sworn in and asked to confirm that the information provided in the marital settlement agreement is agreeable.  If it is, the judge will make it official by filing a Decree of Dissolution of Marriage.   

Most divorcing couples, whether in a traditional or common law marriage, will need the help of a qualified Colorado family law attorney to ensure the marital settlement agreement is fair, and that nothing important is left out of this important document.

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MPatMarrisonFor over a quarter century, we have helped people during what is often the darkest time in their lives. Divorce is not easy even under the best of circumstances. For most people, family is central. Having something go wrong in the family can have a ripple effect that extends beyond the home and into other areas.

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