In Colorado, there is a mandatory 91-day (13 weeks) waiting period between serving the Petition on the Respondent and when the court may grant the divorce. Cases often take longer than the 91-day minimum waiting period. If the parties cannot agree on all issues, the court will usually order the parties to attend a “mediation” to try to voluntarily resolve the disputed issues with the help of a mediator. If the parties cannot resolve their differences at mediation, the court will decide the disputed issues at a “permanent orders hearing.”
At the permanent orders hearing, the parties present witnesses and evidence regarding the disputed issues and try to persuade the court to rule in their favor on these issues. Ultimately, the court decides the disputed issues based on what the court determines is most equitable or fair. After the court issues its ruling, either party may request that the court reconsider or revise some or all of its decisions. Either party may appeal the court’s ruling to the Colorado Court of Appeals or, in some instances, to the Colorado Supreme Court.