August 31, 2023
Divorce in Colombia is the legal mechanism that ends the effects and civil ties resulting from marital union. Within the Colombian legal framework, a divorce can either be mutual or contentious. In this context, depending on the specific case, there might be a need for other legal processes such as the division of assets, spousal support, and determining child custody.
Therefore, the divorce process in Colombia requires the counsel and representation of divorce lawyers, considering the various procedures that must be carried out and the implications on the civil rights of the spouses.
Divorce in Colombia is the legal process that dissolves the marital bond established through civil marriage, ending the obligations and commitments that this bond entails.
Depending on the situation of the spouses, the divorce can be processed either before a judge or a notary. Furthermore, if the couple has minor children, procedures for child custody and determination of child support will also need to be initiated as a result of the divorce.
At AGT Attorneys, we offer exclusive and comprehensive services for divorces in Colombia, providing all the necessary support and legal representation during these complex processes. From protecting and managing the spouses' properties to guidance on the division and distribution of assets, our professionals handle every legal detail.
The grounds for divorce in Colombia are enshrined in the Colombian Civil Code under Article 154. Grounds for divorce are considered subjective when they arise from a failure by one of the spouses to fulfill the obligations or duties of the union. In this scenario, it's known as a punitive divorce, as the innocent spouse calls for the dissolution of the marriage and a guilty spouse is established.
On the other hand, objective grounds leading to divorce are invoked as the best remedy for the circumstances experienced.
For the first ground for divorce, it's important to distinguish between material and moral infidelity. Material infidelity is equivalent to adultery.
Meanwhile, moral infidelity leads to discontent or disdain by one spouse towards the other due to reasons like a mere emotional relationship with another individual.
Divorce can be sought in cases where there is a serious and unjustified breach of marital or parental duties. This may encompass failure to fulfill core roles as husband/wife or mother/father.
A divorce can be sought due to the violation of fundamental duties such as cohabitation, mutual support, and fidelity, without any valid justification for such breach.
This reason for divorce encompasses three specific actions, each of which, on its own, creates a sufficient circumstance to independently seek divorce.
This ground for divorce arises when a spouse cannot control their excessive alcohol consumption, reaching a point of intoxication. To invoke this specific ground for divorce, two conditions must be demonstrated.
Firstly, that the excessive alcohol consumption interferes with the person's normal functioning, and secondly, that this behavior is habitual.
The ground for divorce related to drug use and dependency pertains to the frequent consumption habit that leads to dependency or drug addiction.
For certain illnesses to be considered as grounds for divorce, they need to be diagnosed and determined by healthcare professionals. Moreover, these diseases should pose a threat to the mental or physical health of the other spouse, making marital life challenging and thereby justifying a divorce petition.
However, it's important to bear in mind the principles of mutual aid and support in such cases.
Such conduct must be carried out intentionally and willfully, with the purpose of corrupting or perverting another person, be it an offspring or someone under their care.
It is crucial that these actions are performed deliberately and knowingly, with the explicit intent to corrupt the affected party, any mutual offspring, the other spouse, or individuals sharing the same household.
For this ground of divorce, no prior legal or judicial separation is required. Either spouse can file for divorce once the period of time specified by law has passed, without the need to determine if there is a guilty spouse or not.
At any time and not subject to legal timeframes, spouses have the option to mutually request a divorce from their marriage. This ground is considered the most convenient option to achieve a divorce without the need to disclose intimate aspects of their life in court.
For an express divorce in Colombia, it is imperative that both parties of the couple agree on desiring the divorce, and on the distribution of assets acquired during the marriage. If no assets or debts were acquired during the marriage, they must concur on the dissolution of the partnership with a zero balance.
Therefore, the express divorce is the most efficient alternative when the spouses are in agreement on dissolving the union and do not have minor children.
For a contested divorce in Colombia, the spouses must cite one of the grounds previously mentioned, enshrined in Article 154 of the Civil Code.
They must grant their respective divorce attorneys the authority to provide them with legal representation before the judge.
To initiate the divorce process, a petition must be filed through a divorce attorney, in which the ground one wishes to assert is alleged. Additionally, the necessary annexes and evidence supporting the request should be attached, as required by the General Code of Procedure (GCP).
Once the petition is admitted, the respondent is notified and is expected to reply in writing through a divorce attorney. In this response, the respondent has the opportunity to present objections if applicable.
After the deadline for responding to the petition has passed, the judge sets a date and time for a hearing where the required documents and witness testimonies will be presented.
The judge will convene the involved parties to attempt to reach an agreement and will also make determinations regarding the legally presented evidence.
Once the presentation of evidence has concluded, the judge will listen to the petitioner and then the respondent, granting each a time of 20 minutes to present their arguments.
A judgment is issued, even in the absence of the parties or their legal representatives. In said judgment, the responsibilities for custody of minors, the regulation of alimony, and visitation rights must be established.
Following the issuance of the judgment, the liquidation of the marital community property is presented before the same judge overseeing the divorce.
At AGT Attorneys, we have a distinguished team of divorce attorneys in Colombia, recognized for their extensive experience and specialization in the field of Family Civil Law. Our firm is committed to offering you the best service in divorce matters, providing you with the necessary legal support throughout the process.
Our divorce attorneys will manage all procedures related to the protection and safeguarding of the assets of the spouses involved in the case comprehensively. We understand the importance of preserving your properties and safeguarding your interests during this challenging time.
Additionally, our divorce attorneys in Colombia will provide you with comprehensive advice and guidance regarding the division and distribution of assets. We will stand by your side to explain every step in detail, ensuring you are fully informed and supported in all your decisions.Facebook AGT Attorneys and Twitter @AttorneysAGT
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