Fort Collins Family Law Blog

When a legal issue arises in your family, the best way you can protect yourself and the ones you love is by consulting a family law attorney who understands how to help you.

Child custody and substance abuse — like oil and water?

In the United States today, there are countless minor children in the custody of parents who are dangerously addicted to drugs and/or alcohol. The Washington Times reported there were 47,600 Americans who succumbed to opioid overdoses in a single year. Addiction to opioid drugs is now being referred to by the current Administration as a "national health emergency."

Those statistics are stark, but for the families who live every day with the uncertainty spawned by a loved one's addiction, the realities are even harsher. Still, many — if not most — alcoholics and addicts remain resistant to rehab and recovery programs.

International divorces: Complicated, but not impossible

One of the most complicated types of divorce is an international divorce. It's hard, because unless both people are in the same county, the time it takes to return documents and get in touch with the court can be much longer than it would be if both people were local.

It's also hard because of time differences. Depending on the time difference between countries, it could require a person to stay up until the middle of the night or require them to call the court at unusual hours. Attorneys would also potentially have to be willing to call the international court when it is open.

How to calmly explain a divorce to your children

All divorces, no matter how mutually amicable, are emotionally loaded. You may find that for months before, during and after the divorce, you are more sensitive to your emotions. You may also have a hard time explaining the situation to other people, and this is why it can be challenging to explain the situation to your children.

However, the unfortunate situation is that many parents decide to say nothing to their children instead of having a tough conversation. This can be more harmful to the child, no matter their age. They will still be aware of the changes that are happening, but they may be more fearful of what these changes mean. They may also be reluctant to ask questions about these changes.

The downsides of creating a prenuptial agreement

Almost every attorney will agree that in this modern age, it's an excellent idea for couples to sign a prenuptial agreement. However, if your attorney advises you to sign a prenup, he or she should also advise you of the potential downsides of this document.

In the interest of full disclosure, let's take a look at a few things you should be aware of before entering into a prenuptial agreement:

  • You might have to sign away your ability to receive part of your spouse's estate in the event that he or she dies. According to Colorado estate laws, even if a prenuptial agreement exists, you may still be able to inherit some of your spouse's estate, but a prenup will likely preclude you from receiving the lion's share of the estate.
  • You could lose the ability to receive part ownership of your spouse's business. Spouses play a strong role in the growth of a family business. For example, even if you're not involved in the daily running of your spouse's business, by entertaining guests and providing a shoulder to lean for your spouse, you're providing more support than you might realize. A prenuptial agreement could prohibit you from claiming the value of that contribution during a divorce.
  • A prenuptial agreement could make your marriage feel more businesslike as opposed to "romantic."
  • It's hard to predict what things will be like when you divorce. Perhaps you will be the "moneyed" spouse due to a successful business venture and your spouse will be the "lesser-moneyed" spouse -- or the other way around. Signing a prenuptial agreement, just like signing a marriage certificate, is a gamble -- you never know what things will be like in the future.

A prenup can make your divorce go smoothly

You and your significant other plan to get married in the near future, and you do not think you will need a prenuptial agreement. After all, you do not have that many assets yet, and you both have about the same amount of money. You think prenups are just for rich people trying to protect their wealth and keep it from a spouse. Right?

While prenups are very helpful when protecting wealth, that is by no means the only reason to use them. One of the biggest benefits is that it can help a potential divorce go smoothly, no matter how much you own. You get to make those critical decisions in advance.

3 questions to help you decide if divorce is right for you

DivorceIf you are trying to decide if a divorce is right for you, then you are in a precarious position. You may want to speak with your attorney, but doing so could tip off your spouse that something is wrong. If you aren't sure about what you want to do yet, speaking with your attorney is one of the best things you can do. Your attorney can help you decide what you would need to get together to file for divorce and would be able to give you an idea about how your assets would be divided upon divorce.

Before you go to your attorney, you will want to ask yourself a few questions to decide if a divorce is really what you want. To begin with, you need to sit down and decide if your marriage is not worth saving. If there is abuse, adultery or other issues, then you may be correct in moving forward with the divorce. Here are a few other things to consider.

Moving to a new home is an adjustment for children

The changes that come with a divorce are hard for everyone involved. One challenge for children might be having to move to a new home. Some children have lived in the same home for as long as they can remember and the thought of having to leave it is difficult.

Parents who are facing the possibility of moving need to prepare the children for what's to come. It might not be easy but moving is a good signal that your new life is starting. Consider these points as you work with your children regarding the move:

Avoid these missteps in your high-net worth divorce

Divorce is never an easy process even if, in the beginning, it seems like you both agree on every aspect. In fact, there are so many moving parts to divorce, that the chances of ending things without even a minor battle are very slim.

For instance, while you might reach an easy decision on who gets the main house in Fort Collins, you could find yourselves fighting over the dog, the living room furniture, the weekend cabin in Aspen or even the retirement accounts.

Be sure to choose an attorney who will assist you in resolving these issues without blowing them out of proportion.  Give us a call for a consult to get creative ideas on how to work out your differences -- without creating more conflict!

Opting for legal separation: How it differs from divorce

As someone who is not happy with your spouse, you might think that a divorce is your only option. You don't want to go through a divorce, and you'd rather stay married due to the benefits it provides. You aren't interested in getting married again.

Someone like you is a great candidate for a legal separation instead of a divorce. Others may wish to use a legal separation prior to a divorce.

Getting an international divorce in Colorado

It is becoming increasingly common for marriages to either take place outside of the United States or end when spouses are living in different countries. If you want to file for a divorce in Colorado but your spouse is currently living outside of the United States, you might be confused as to how you move forward with your divorce filing.

Such divorce filings do have the potential to become complicated, because American family law needs to interact with international law and potentially the law of the country in which your other spouse is living. Therefore, it's a good idea that you take the time to learn about how the law applies to you before taking action in filing for your international divorce.

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