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In re Marriage of Bisque
Colorado Court of Appeals
31 P.3d 175 (2001)
Matthew Bisque (plaintiff) and Cheryl Bisque (defendant) dissolved their marriage through a mail-order Mexican divorce kit. Matthew and Cheryl also signed an agreement before a notary public and included it with the divorce papers. The agreement provided that Cheryl would receive most of the marital estate, including the home. The divorce was granted by a Mexican decree, which referenced the agreement. Approximately two months later, Matthew filed an action of his own for dissolution. Cheryl sought a declaratory judgment that the marriage had already been dissolved. The trial court determined that the Mexican divorce was invalid but that the underlying agreement was valid. However, the court noted that the agreement was unfair—the result of pressure exerted on Matthew by Cheryl when Matthew was in an emotionally fragile state. The court also held that the agreement was a marital agreement rather than a separation agreement, because it was entered before the filing of the dissolution action. The marriage was dissolved. Matthew appealed, arguing that the agreement was a separation agreement and thus subject to a stricter standard of review. The Colorado Court of Appeals granted certiorari.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Taubman, J.)
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