Divorce proceedings in Colorado involve several steps and could involve many types of court decisions and determinations. Some of these are decrees, while others are orders that serve to resolve certain issues. One type of order is a continuation of jurisdiction. This is reserved for some property issues and matters that relate to children, such as decision-making power, parenting time, and child support payments. Temporary orders are issued to establish spousal maintenance and child support, to address the responsibilities and rights of parents, and to divide property until these matters are resolved in permanent orders.
Permanent orders are issued to fully resolve these and any other matters that the court deems necessary. Prior to issuing the order, the court hears evidence during a Decree and Permanent Orders hearing. The hearing cannot be scheduled until at least 90 days after the divorce petition is filed. Permanent orders are unchangeable unless the court has continuing jurisdiction over the matters resolved in the orders.
The court also issues decrees of legal separation, which resolves the legal issues between two spouses but does not terminate their marriage. A spouse is then allowed to gain property and debt without the other spouse gaining rights and obligations to those acquisitions. A Decree of Dissolution of Marriage ends the marriage once it is issued. One spouse can turn a Decree of Legal Separation into a Decree of Dissolution of Marriage without the other spouse's approval six months following the date that the legal separation decree was entered.
Every divorce proceeding is different and involves various court orders depending on the particular circumstances of the parties involved. Those wishing to get a better idea of what to expect during their divorce proceedings might achieve this by seeking the advice of family law attorneys.
Source: Colorado Judicial Branch, "Basic Concepts of Dissolution of Marriage and Legal Separation Cases", accessed on 1/12/2015