Douglas County Child Custody
The issue of who gets custody of the kids can be a painful aspect of divorce in Colorado and elsewhere. In the not-too-distant past, the courts favored giving custody to the mother. However, times have changed, and now courts look at what's in the best interest of the child when determining a custody schedule. Our diligent and experienced child custody attorneys can help Douglas County residents make persuasive arguments to the court about the custody arrangement that would be in the best interest of your children.Factors Considered in Determining Child Custody
Judges weigh a variety of factors when making any determination about child custody. Among these factors are the parents' wishes, the child's wishes, the way each parent interacts with the child, the health (both physical and mental) of the parties, the child's adjustment to his environment including school and community, past relationship of the parties, whether spousal or child abuse is at issue, and the geographic closeness of the parents' residences. Colorado courts will not award custody to a parent who presents an emotional or physical danger to a child.
There is no set age at which a child's wishes are dispositive on the issue of custody. Courts consider a child's maturity and ability to express a reasonable and independent opinion in determining whether to grant the child's preference as to parenting schedules.
Also of concern to the courts is each parent's ability to put their children's needs ahead of their own needs. This means, among other things, encouraging your child's relationship with his or her other parent. Unless abuse is an element in their relationship, most contemporary studies show that children who have two parents who care for them are more likely to develop character and strength than those that have only one.
It is important to note that child support, even failure to pay child support, is an independent issue from a parent's right to see his or her child. Encouraging your child in his or her relationship with the other parent is better for purposes of presenting your case to a judge and more importantly, it's better for your child.Equal Parenting Time in Colorado
Although it is preferred, equal parenting time is not automatically assured. This is one reason it's important to retain an experienced family law attorney with substantial experience in Douglas County.
There are number of situations in which it may be more difficult to obtain equal parenting time. For example, if one parent lives several hours away from the other, it would be difficult to divide time equally and ensure the children get to go to school on a stable schedule. In this case, it may be preferable to give custody to one parent and allow the other parent weekend and holiday visitations.
Similarly, if your children are very young and have an intense attachment to a parent who stays at home to care for them, it may be better for the children to have more parenting time with the stay at home parent until they get older. As your children grow up and develop different needs, there may be good reason to request the court to modify the child custody arrangement. Our attorneys can help you gather evidence and ask for those modifications.Dedicated Child Custody Lawyers in Douglas County
The attorneys at Plog & Stein, P.C. are meticulous, but efficient when working up a case. You maintain a better negotiating position by being ready to go to trial, so we prepare to fight vigorously for the best interests of your family in a courtroom. However, we do try to resolve your case as favorably as possible through other means, such as mediation or negotiated settlement. Our attorneys are skilled negotiators with an impressive track record.
Contact our experienced Douglas County child custody attorneys at Plog & Stein, P.C. by phone at (303) 781-0322, or via our online form. Our office provides personal service, as well as logically sound and dedicated representation. We know the well being of your family is of vital importance to you, and we work hard to seek the outcome your family deserves.