Legal Question in Family Law in Colorado

I live in Colorado, I have been with a lady for 30 years, I have been completely dependent on her for all that time, in 1999 we divorced but we reconciled and I have still lived with her and I am still dependent on her to this very day, she is 70 and now wants me to leave which will make me homeless, she is very, very well to do, do I have any rights with her? There are no common children involved.

Asked on 12/01/16, 12:47 am

2 Answers from Attorneys

Stephen Harkess Colorado Legal Solutions

Unless you were married, you have no rights to your lady's money. If she is done with you, you need to move on.

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Answered on 12/01/16, 8:44 am

The fact of the divorce in 1999 definitely changes everything. Without a marriage, you leave with whatever you had after the divorce in 1999 and whatever you have acquired since, but you have no rights to her money or her assets. If any accounts or assets are held in both of your names, you would be entitled to your interest in those. How much that interest would be is dependent on the specific facts. It is possible under certain facts for the Court to decide that you have no ownership interest in an asset even if your name is on it.

The only thing that would change this would be if you could prove that after the divorce in 1999, you established a common law marriage. That would require being able to prove that you both started telling the world that you were married again. This typically involves things like being able to show tax returns that were filed as married, joint bank accounts, joint debts, etc. If you could prove that, the next question becomes proving a start date, because that will be required to determine marital values of assets and length of marriage for considering maintenance issues.

Otherwise, it's time to start figuring out what your options are. You might look for some community resources that can help you, whether it's getting employment, training for employment, finding affordable housing, getting on disability, or finding resources for the elderly, depending on your situation.

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Answered on 12/02/16, 8:23 am

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