Colorado: Filing for Divorce on Your Own vs. Jointly?

It does not matter to the court who the petitioner (the one who initiates the process) is and who the respondent is. There is no inherent prejudice or benefit for being one or the other. Filing as co-petitioners also does not give you an advantage, except that you only have to pay one filing fee and do not have to formally serve (deliver) the first set of divorce forms. It is all about choosing what is best for you and your situation.

If you and your spouse are able to work together, filing as co-petitioners will save money on filing costs. Once your petition is filed with the court, the soonest your divorce will be officially decreed is three months. (The court requires a mandatory 91-day waiting period.)

However, if a person files the petition on their own and then serves the other spouse with a copy, the 91-day period begins on the date the petition is served.

Another difference is that if filing jointly, you’ll only have to file JDF 1000 (Case Information) and JDF 1101 (Petition). If filing on your own, you will have to file JDF 1000, 1001, and 1102.