Colorado is an equitable distribution state, meaning that spouses divide marital assets fairly and equitably, which may not mean half-half. The law splits assets by considering the length of the marriage, each spouse’s financial needs, earning capacity, age, health, and other factors. While receiving spousal support (alimony) is now less common, some still get it as part of the divorce agreement.
Negotiating for assets
Each divorce’s details differ, but spouses should consider their best interests, particularly when dividing marital assets. Below are some factors to weigh to see if it makes good financial sense:
- The value: Cash offered may equal to a specific number of support payments spread over the years. Still, it may be an asset like a home, part of a business or other valuable asset. The couple should appraise the asset, but there may also be a chance that it increases in value over time, making the asset a better deal than the payments.
- An argument for spousal support: Fighting for alimony support versus accepting the asset can be risky since there may be no support guarantee. Those who qualify for it may need to fight for it, which can mean litigation in court.
- Consider the future: Real estate or retirement accounts are stable long-term investments, while spousal support may end after a set time.
- The risk of modification: Divorce agreements consider current circumstances and how those are likely to change. The couple’s arrangement may be modified in the future. Common reasons include a change in a spouse’s financial situation, remarriage, illness, or death.
Everyone’s priorities are a little different
Financial stability is a significant concern for many. Depending upon the spousal support arrangement, it may make sense to have money tied up in assets that increase in value rather than remain reliant on a spouse who may or may not meet their obligations, regardless of what the court says. Conversely, a steady payment plan can provide peace of mind. Those considering a divorce likely to include spousal support should discuss their options with a family law attorney who can provide valuable insight.