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Changing parental responsibilities in Colorado

In Colorado, the allocation of parental responsibilities in custody and visitation determinations is done based on the best interest of the child. Therefore, it is possible that a judge may change an order in the future as the needs of the child change or the circumstances of a parent change. For instance, if one parent is convicted of a crime or engages in child or spousal abuse, a judge may be inclined to change a custody order.

If a parent believes that his or her child is in immediate danger when around the other parent, that parent may file a motion to suspend or restrict the other party's parenting time. A judge will make a ruling on the motion within seven days of receiving it. During that time, any contact that the parent has with the child will be supervised by an impartial third-party.

In the event that the motion was considered groundless or frivolous, the person who filed the motion will be responsible for the court costs and legal fees of the other parent. When filing a motion to revise an allocation order, that motion may need to be filed in the court that issued it. This is because that court may retain jurisdiction in the case even if a parent has moved. However, it may be possible to ask to have jurisdiction moved to another court.

In a child custody case, a judge will make a ruling based on the best interest of the child at the time of the ruling. With the help of a family law attorney, it may be possible to show the court that the needs of the child have changed. This could make it possible to have a custody order revised to allow a parent more time with the child.

Source: Women's Law, "If an allocation of parental responsibilities order is already in place, how can I get it changed?", December 10, 2014

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