How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Lady Themis Your Own Question

Lady Themis
Lady Themis, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 7751
Experience:  Divorce, child custody, child support, etc.
11297241
Type Your Family Law Question Here...
Lady Themis is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

In Colorado, is there an average, typical, or range of "Spousal

Resolved Question:

In Colorado, is there an average, typical, or range of "Spousal Maintenance" for divorce for a 20-year marriage? Neither party is disabled and both are able to work.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Lady Themis replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your question.

In determining spousal support, it is often best to start with the governing statute. Here is a link to the text of that law (Colorado Statutes 14-10-114):

http://www.lexisnexis.com/hottopics/Colorado/

Generally, a long-term marriage such as this one usually warrants discussion of lifetime maintenance. Unfortunately as you have found there is no set standard or formula in determining duration or amount. The statute sets forth various factors for consideration, which are:

(a) The financial resources of the party seeking maintenance, including marital property apportioned to such party, and the party's ability to meet his or her needs independently, including the extent to which a provision for support of a child living with the party includes a sum for that party;

(b) The time necessary to acquire sufficient education or training to enable the party seeking maintenance to find appropriate employment and that party's future earning capacity;

(c) The standard of living established during the marriage;

(d) The duration of the marriage;

(e) The age and the physical and emotional condition of the spouse seeking maintenance; and

(f) The ability of the spouse from whom maintenance is sought to meet his or her needs while meeting those of the spouse seeking maintenance.

You said that both parties are able to work. That will be considered, but whether the parties worked during that marriage will also be considered. The closer the parties are in terms of income and assets, generally the less the maintenance order is in terms of both duration and amount.

Regarding amount, you can expect that the court will not enter an order which would result in the payor spouse having less income than the payee. For example, if the payor earns 80K per year and the payee earns 50k per year, a straight division would result in the payor paying 15k per year (80+50 / 2). That is about the max the court would award, and would work down depending on those factors mentioned above.

I hope this helps.

I hope this answers your question. Please let me know if you have any follow-up questions, which I am happy to answer. Once you are satisfied, please kindly rate my service, as that is how I am compensated by the website. Thank you.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thank you, XXXXX XXXXX read most of that already on-line. I also read the statute previously. I am trying to find out if there was a "typical" range for spousal maintenance that would apply to this case. Yes, we both have worked and I do earn over $80k/year.


For experienced divorce lawyers in CO (specifically in El Paso County, where I reside)....is there a typical range (number of years for spousal maintenance)? Is there a typical general formula? You mention $15k/yr is about the maximum the court would award...is that for any situation?

Expert:  Lady Themis replied 1 year ago.
The $15k I mentioned was based on the income levels I mentioned in the example. That is a general starting point, to take both parties' incomes, add them together, divide by 2, and assign any of the higher income to the lesser. That is about the maximum maintenance that could be awarded, and the parties generally negotiate down from there. It is a good standard for determining your potential exposure. Beyond that, maintenance is truly determined on a case by case basis, and depends on many various factors.


It is not likely that there is an attorney online who practices specifically in that county, as this site is intended for general legal information only. However, I can opt out for another attorney to take a look if you'd like.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Well, if you think another attorney could answer the questions I have regarding what may be "typical" ranges (duration and money) for Colorado (I don't know if it varies between Counties within the state or not), that would be very helpful.


If you think there is no answer to my questions and I just need to go to a local attorney and pay them to answer the questions (assuming they could...not sure), then let me know.

Expert:  Lady Themis replied 1 year ago.
Other than what I have described, there simply is no typical maintenance range. It is always based on the detailed circumstances of the parties. Only an attorney that you sit down with in person to discuss your situation with in detail could tell you what the appropriate maintenance award in your case would be. I can tell you with some certainty that in long-term marriages such as yours, permanent maintenance is sometimes awarded. Again, the duration will depend on the above factors, such as your ability to meet your needs, and your spouse's ability to meet her own needs.

Lady Themis, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 7751
Experience: Divorce, child custody, child support, etc.
Lady Themis and other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Alright then, I will try and seek some information locally. I appreciate your trying to answer my questions.

Expert:  Lady Themis replied 1 year ago.
All the best to you.

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • Not only did he answer my Michigan divorce question but was also able to help me out with it, too. I have since won my legal case on this matter and thank you so much for it. Lee Michigan
< Last | Next >
  • Not only did he answer my Michigan divorce question but was also able to help me out with it, too. I have since won my legal case on this matter and thank you so much for it. Lee Michigan
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
  • My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer. Eric Redwood City, CA
  • I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight. Michael Wichita, KS
  • PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent. Three H. Houston, TX
  • Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!! Elaine Atlanta, GA
  • It worked great. I had the facts and I presented them to my ex-landlord and she folded and returned my deposit. The 50 bucks I spent with you solved my problem. Tony Apopka, FL
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Ely

    Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    8085
    Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RA/ratioscripta/2012-6-13_2955_foto3.64x64.jpg Ely's Avatar

    Ely

    Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    8085
    Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/LA/LawTalk/2012-6-6_17379_LawTalk.64x64.JPG LawTalk's Avatar

    LawTalk

    Attorney and Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    6424
    27+ years legal experience. I remain current in Family Law through regular continuing education.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/FL/FLAandNYLawyer/2012-1-27_14349_3Fotolia25855429M.64x64.jpg FiveStarLaw's Avatar

    FiveStarLaw

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    6336
    25 years of experience helping people like you.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/dkaplun/2009-05-17_173121_headshot_1_2.jpg Dimitry K., Esq.'s Avatar

    Dimitry K., Esq.

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    5987
    I provide family and divorce law advice to my clients in my firm.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/MU/multistatelaw/2011-11-27_173951_Tinaglamourshotworkglow102011.64x64.jpg Tina's Avatar

    Tina

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    5773
    JD, 15 years legal experience including family law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/BrianTMayer/2010-01-06_200119_BM.jpg Brandon M.'s Avatar

    Brandon M.

    Family Law Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    3810
    Attorney experienced in all aspects of family law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/TU/TUSA/2012-6-6_55219_test.64x64.png Thoreau (T-USA)'s Avatar

    Thoreau (T-USA)

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    2634
    Attorney