Child custody under Colorado law is known as “parental responsibility” and encompasses “parenting time” (who the child is with) and “decision-making” for major decisions regarding the child. Parental responsibility cases can be brought as part of a divorce but the parents do not have to be married to bring a parental responsibility case. The custody of a child is at stake and Colorado law has provided a means by which that custody can be determined–regardless of the marital status of the parents. Be prepared for your case by hiring an experienced child custody support lawyer in Colorado Springs.
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Child custody determinations are made based upon the “best interest of the child”. This means that a parent’s wishes are considered, but not necessarily controlling on the Court. Title 14, specifically 14-10-124, Colorado Revised Statutes, (C.R.S.) provides a list of issues a court must decide to determine the best interest of the child. The list includes:
- The wishes of the child’s parents as to parenting time;
- The wishes of the child if he or she is sufficiently mature to express reasoned and independent preferences as to the parenting time schedule;
- The interaction and interrelationship of the child with his or her parents, his or her siblings, and any other person who may significantly affect the child’s best interests;
- The child’s adjustment to his or her home, school, and community;
- The mental and physical health of all individuals involved, except that a disability alone shall not be a basis to deny or restrict parenting time;
- The ability of the parties to encourage the sharing of love, affection, and contact between the child and the other party; except that, if the court determines that a party is acting to protect the child from witnessing domestic violence or from being a victim of child abuse or neglect or domestic violence, the party’s protective actions shall not be considered with respect to this factor;
- Whether the past pattern of involvement of the parties with the child reflects a system of values, time commitment, and mutual support;
- The physical proximity of the parties to each other as this relates to the practical considerations of parenting time;
- The ability of each party to place the needs of the child ahead of his or her own needs.
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For each of these factors, evidence is presented, and the court makes a determination based upon the strength, credibility, and persuasiveness of the evidence. Custody cases can be heart-wrenching and extremely stressful. There is so much uncertainty when the parents are asking a Judge to make a decision–and their child’s life and happiness, and sometimes safety, are at stake. Contact a child custody support lawyer in Colorado Springs today to get started.
Contact A Child Custody Support Lawyer In Colorado Springs Today