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I Am Getting Divorced in Denver, CO. Do I Need an Attorney?

There are several factors to consider when deciding whether or not to retain an attorney for your Denver divorce case. If your case is a standard divorce, then you likely do not need an attorney. If the two parties are on the same page regarding the issues in the case, then you likely do not need an attorney. However, if there is major contention between the two parties, you cannot agree regarding significant issues such as parenting time, or there are complicating factors such as domestic abuse, substance abuse, child abuse, or income disparity, you will likely need to hire an attorney.

Uncontested Divorce

If you are and your partner are in agreement concerning all issues in your case, then you may file an uncontested divorce. In an uncontested divorce, a separation agreement must be signed and filed with the court. A separation agreement will detail how property will be divided between the two parties, as well as address maintenance, child custody, and child support, should you have minor children. The parties will also need to file an Affidavit for Decree without Appearance. This document allows the court to grant a divorce without having the parties appear before the court. After 91 days have passed since filing all of the necessary paperwork, the court may issue a divorce decree and order the signed separation agreement as part of the order as well. When the parties agree on all aspects of the case, such as in an uncontested divorce, you will likely not need an attorney.


If you believe that you and your partner are able to resolve any issue amongst yourselves, however, are not yet at that point, mediation is a great alternative. Mediation is a process where a neutral third party will serve as a facilitator to address and resolve any issues between the two parties. A mediator may aid to resolve a number of issues, including division of property, maintenance, child custody, and child support. Currently, mediation often occurs via Zoom. Generally, mediation lasts for two hours, however, you may schedule mediation for longer or schedule multiple appointments for mediation if you believe a resolution is imminent. Should mediation be successful, the parties may leave with a signed agreement as to how to divide assets, address custody, and/or any other issue the parties are faced with. Should mediation not be successful, then you may want to proceed to court.

Our Calculators

We’re not fans of surprises and we suspect you aren’t either. We built these divorce calculators just for you, so you know what to expect every step of the way.


If you and your partner are having difficulty communicating, it may be a good idea to use TalkingParents. This app allows both parties to communicate effectively through text, video calls, or phone calls. All communications are recorded and saved to provide accountability should any issue in the future arise. For example, if the parents agree to daily phone calls between the child and the parent who is not exercising parenting time, TalkingParents will maintain unalterable records to prove or disprove that the calls have been taking place. TalkingParents also allows parties to share a calendar for parenting time schedule, doctor appointments, or any other child-related activities so that both parents may continue to be involved.

Complex Divorce Factors


If your spouse is becoming hostile by refusing to let you see the children or threatening to dispose of marital assets, it is a good idea to obtain an attorney. By hiring an attorney, the parties may limit direct communication and utilize the attorney as a facilitator. This may aid to avoid any negative interactions.

Domestic Abuse

If you are not comfortable with your partner being alone with the children due to domestic abuse, please know there are ways to protect your family. If you are in an unsafe situation, you should obtain a temporary protection order. This will protect you and your children for approximately 14 days. Your partner will be notified that a temporary protection order is in place. After this period, you may request a permanent protection order. In order to obtain a permanent protection order, you will need to go before the court and provide testimony and evidence as to why a permanent protection order is necessary. Your partner will be present at this hearing and will be able to argue why they do not believe a permanent protection order is necessary. Should the court grant a permanent protection order, it will likely last 2 years and can be renewed. You may want representation at a hearing of this nature. Once you and your children are safe, the custody battle will begin. At this point obtaining an attorney will be beneficial because of the complex factors that are intertwined with the custody case.

Substance Abuse

If you fear that your co-parent is heavily utilizing a legal or illegal substance, you may request the court order your partner to take mandatory drug or alcohol tests. There are many different forms of testing for drugs and alcohol, however requesting a test to take place before, during, and after any parenting time will provide both you and your children with the knowledge that they are safe with the other parent. Substance abuse is a multifaceted issue and it may be beneficial to obtain representation to ensure that your children are safe in the presence of the co-parent.

Income Disparity

If there is an income disparity between yourself and the other party, then you may prefer to obtain representation because it is important to know what you are entitled to and what rights you have. This is because child support and maintenance both utilize gross monthly income to address any necessary payments. Child support is a monthly payment provided by one parent to the other parent which assists in covering the costs of the child’s necessities, such as clothing and food. Child support is mandatory and will be ordered by the court in any matter concerning divorce or allocation of parental responsibilities. Child support is calculated utilizing several factors, however, the two essential factors are: (1) the gross monthly income of each parent and (2) the number of overnights each year each parent exercises with the child.

On the other hand, maintenance is a monthly payment provided by one individual to another to provide financial support for the other individual’s accustomed living expenses. While maintenance is not mandatory and the court does not generally award maintenance to marriages under 3 years, maintenance is calculated through (1) the gross monthly income of each individual and (2) the length of the marriage.


Our Attorneys Are Ready To Listen

Our experienced family law attorneys in Denver have the knowledge, resources, and dedication to prepare your case and protect your interests to find the best possible outcome.

If you are a party proceeding pro se, or without legal representation, please visit the following link to aid you in navigating this process. If you would prefer obtaining assistance to guide you throughout this process, please feel free to contact Modern Family Law for a free consultation. Modern Family Law employs a number of highly dedicated and motivated Denver attorneys that will advocate for you throughout your legal battle.

Modern Family Law

Modern Family Law’s team of experienced family law attorneys takes a compassionate approach to the practice of family law. Using innovative technology to create an effective and efficient process for our clientele, our attorneys approach each case as a collective effort to find the best long-term solutions for each family. Our attorneys currently practice in Colorado, California, and Texas. Click the following link to view all of our family law locations. For more information please give us a call or fill out a short form online to sign up for a free consultation today! Let us make a positive difference in your life.

Posted January 14, 2022
by: MFL Team

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