Colorado statutes spell out the importance of “frequent and continuing contact between each parent and the minor children of the marriage after the parents have separated or dissolved their marriage.” The court system encourages parents to try and work amicably to share child-rearing duties and to reach agreement about decisions that affect their children. Among the most important decisions to be made involves custody of your children. Arrangements for custody and parenting time will be specified in a divorce or legal separation decree. Sometimes, though, such arrangements require adjustments or modification. When custody changes are needed, consult your Colorado child custody attorney for guidance.
The Castle Rock child custody attorneys at Ellmann & Ellmann know that nothing is more important to you than the well-being of your children. Our lawyers have extensive knowledge of Colorado’s legal system, and we have a strong record of successfully negotiating workable arrangements for parenting time and custody for divorced or separated parents. We understand that any decision about the welfare of your child is an important one. That’s why we are committed to providing you with personalized attention and caring legal representation.
All the decisions made by the court that involve child care and custody are based on what the law defines as “the best interests of the child.” That means that, when it comes to your children, the court wants to ensure that any arrangements made will take into consideration the physical, emotional and mental needs of the children.
Despite the most careful planning, changes to custody and other child-related arrangements are sometimes necessary. Modifying a custody decree involves the approval of the court. Colorado law specifies these conditions under which custody modification can be considered in order to serve the child’s best interests:
- The child’s circumstances have changed
- The custodial parent’s circumstances have changed
Even if custody is modified under those circumstances, the law directs the court to leave decision-making responsibility unchanged unless:
- The involved parties agree to modify decision-making responsibility
- The child’s integration into the family of the parent seeking the modification warrants a change in decision-making responsibility
- Modification to a parenting-time order warrants changing decision-making responsibility
- Despite their agreement to share responsibility, one parent consents that the other make decisions about the child
- Leaving decision-making arrangements unchanged would endanger the child physically or emotionally and changing environments would cause greater benefit than harm to the child
Colorado law relating to child custody is complex and very specific in describing situations that allow for modifying existing custody agreements. When you need the informed and seasoned guidance of a Castle Rock child custody attorney, contact the law offices of Ellmann & Ellmann. Our veteran child custody lawyers will work with you to negotiate custody changes when needed to best serve your child. At Ellmann & Ellmann, we understand that the law can seem confusing and intimidating. Our Colorado child custody attorneys will meet with you to learn the circumstances of your custody case. We’ll clearly explain the options available to you and take the action needed to help you successfully resolve questions about child custody. When you need proven legal strength on your side, contact Ellmann & Ellmann online or call our offices at (303) 814-2600.
Many Factors Influence Parenting Time and Child Custody
Some of the factors that might influence decisions about parenting time and custody are:
- Parents’ wishes
- The child’s wishes if he/she is old enough to make and express an informed opinion
- The relationships that exist between each parent and the child
- Physical and mental health of both parents and the child
- The child’s adjustment to home, school and community
- How well each parent supports a nurturing relationship between the child and the other parent
- Proximity of parents’ residences
- Each parent’s ability to put the child’s needs ahead of their own
Source: Colorado Revised Statutes