At Ciancio Ciancio Brown, P.C., our family law firm has the experience and resources that men need on their side during a divorce. Our father’s rights lawyers in Denver and paralegals have been handpicked by Cynthia L. Ciancio, one of Colorado’s most accomplished family law attorneys.
Men face many fears and uncertainties in divorce and family law cases. From worrying about protecting their relationship with their children to safeguarding the financial assets they have worked so hard for, men have high stakes in these situations. The first step toward achieving a successful outcome is choosing the right Denver father’s rights attorney.
While family courts are moving away from favoring mothers in custody decisions, Colorado is not a 50/50 custody state. Instead, the courts have the goal of deciding in the child’s best interests in a custody situation. As a fathers’ rights attorney in Denver, we can assist you in showing a judge why awarding you the amount of parenting time and legal decision-making you desire is in your child or children’s best interests. Our Denver family law attorneys will protect your best interests and work toward your custody goal through the following:
You shouldn’t go it alone when something as important as remaining an active, involved parent in your children’s lives is at stake. A Denver fathers’ rights attorney will also focus on preserving your financial interests and protecting your right to support yourself.
If you need an experienced attorney to protect your rights in Colorado custody situations, you can expect to pay $250-$300 per hour. Once you set up an initial consultation, your attorney can explain what fees you can expect through the proceedings and give you an idea of the number of hours they’ll require to work on your case to best defend your interests. Our clients benefit from the combined knowledge of a skilled and experienced legal team as well as individualized attention.
Colorado practices a gender-blind attitude toward deciding matters of child custody. In Colorado, fathers have the same rights as mothers to raise their children, engage in day-to-day care, and make legal decisions. Ideally, colorado courts favor 50/50 parenting schedules but maintain the goal of deciding in the best interests of the children in all custody decisions. Family courts in Colorado consistently make decisions that support a child’s ongoing, frequent contact and close relationships with each parent.
Unless there are strong legal grounds to keep you separated from your children, such as a restraining order or an emergency court order to restrict parenting time, the other parent and/or their lawyer cannot restrict your access to your children.
As a part of the standard divorce proceedings in Colorado, the courts urge parents to come up with their own fair parenting schedule in an agreement that works for both of them and is in their children’s best interest. If parents cannot come to a mutually acceptable parenting time schedule, then the matter must come before a judge to decide. In that case, the burden falls on a father to prove to the court that his desired parenting schedule is in his children’s best interests. Family courts in Colorado consider the following:
In general, the court favors joint parenting time and shared parental responsibility unless a parent can show that a different arrangement is in a child’s best interest. As a father, it’s crucial to show the court that you can provide a stable, emotionally supportive environment for your children—one that’s equal to or exceeds the one the mother provides.
Because the Colorado court decides all matters in the best interests of the children and does not have a partiality to either mothers or fathers in custody decisions, a father has an equal likelihood of receiving full custody as a mother; however, either parent seeking full custody would have to demonstrate to the court why that would be in the child’s best interest. Colorado family courts are more in favor of joint custody and equal parenting time divided between both parents.
Though generally, courts in Colorado maintain the ideal that continued frequent contact with both parents is best for a child’s well-being, Colorado family court judges always decide in the best interests of the children. This means that in some circumstances, a father’s parental rights are subject to termination, either voluntarily or involuntarily. Some fathers make the decision to terminate their own parental rights for various reasons, including step-parent adoption. But in limited circumstances, the court can order a father’s rights to be terminated, including in cases of the following:
The other parent, a child guardian, or another family member can request a termination of a father’s parental rights for any of the above circumstances. A judge will consider the evidence and then decide if terminating a father’s rights will provide a safer, more stable, and emotionally nurturing environment for the children.
When an unmarried woman gives birth in Colorado, she’s automatically granted full custody and legal rights to the child. It requires a court order establishing paternity for an unmarried father to gain his parental rights. Even when a father’s name is on the birth certificate, he may need a valid paternity test to establish himself as the child’s biological father before enjoying full parental rights and responsibilities to the child if he wasn’t married to the mother at the time of the child’s birth or later.
A child’s father can legally establish his paternity by taking a test through the legal process of obtaining a Final Order of Paternity with the Colorado court. Once the order of paternity is in place establishing a father’s parental rights, they can negotiate a parenting schedule with the other parent for court approval or the court will issue orders for dividing parenting time and legal decision-making.
Having an attorney protecting your interests and your child’s best interests throughout this process can be the key to achieving your desired outcome.
Unless the court grants a father primary physical custody of a child, it’s likely that he will have to pay an amount in child support to the other parent. It’s important to note that the amount will be reduced based on the amount of parenting time you have with the children in your care. While there is a historic presumption that a man must pay child support to their children’s mother, that isn’t necessarily the case in every situation in Colorado. Regardless of gender, if one parent is the primary custodian of the children, and the other parent has visitation rights, the parent with visitation pays child support to the parent with the most parenting time. When the parenting time is evenly divided, the higher-earning parent will have the obligation to pay child support to the lower-earning parent, regardless of gender. The amount of child support one parent pays to the other follows state formulas and guidelines.
Our attorneys understand how distressing it can be for men as they face a divorce. What will happen to the assets they have worked so hard to accumulate? What about their business that has been built on their blood, sweat, and tears? From seeking a divorce decree that does not involve spousal maintenance to disputing overly generous distribution of assets, we work diligently to protect the property rights of men in divorce.
Unlike states that divide marital property in a strict 50/50 ratio, Colorado divorce courts work toward the equitable division of assets and debts acquired during a marriage. This means the desired outcome is fair, but not always absolutely equal. Property subject to equitable division in Colorado includes:
In some cases, it’s possible to prove that separate property owned by a spouse before the marriage became marital property if the other spouse invested in it or made improvements. Our attorneys understand how to help protect men against the unfair division of separate property during a divorce and how to protect against unfair asset distribution.
For men getting a divorce or unwed fathers seeking to protect their rights, our Denver father’s rights attorneys offer skilled representation focused on protecting the father-child relationship. Due to the past perception that fathers were not treated fairly in child custody and visitation cases, many fathers are worried that they may not be granted custodial rights or legal custody.
We work closely with fathers to allay their fears and inform them of their parental rights. We take an active approach in improving the situations of fathers, beginning with educating them about how they can become more involved with their children and improve their odds of receiving custodial rights.
Ciancio Ciancio Brown, P.C. is ready to guide you to the best possible outcome in your legal proceedings. Contact us to schedule a child custody case evaluation with our Denver fathers’ rights lawyers.