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Goodbye to You: Michelle Branch Seeks Divorce, Joint Custody

Michelle Branch’s 10-year marriage is coming to an end, as the “All You Wanted” singer filed for divorce on February 9, 2015. The singer and her husband, bassist Teddy Landau, cited irreconcilable differences as the reason for the divorce, but the divorce is proceeding amicably so far (a seeming rarity among celebrity separation stories). Both musicians agree to seek joint custody of their nine-year-old daughter.

How Does Colorado Handle Joint Child Custody?

In Colorado, we don’t use the term custody ”“ instead, the concept is termed “allocation of parental responsibility.” Regardless, the function is similar ”“ to provide for the best interests of the child. Colorado judges prefer to award joint parental responsibility to allow both parents frequent and continuous contact with the child. To determine eligibility for joint parental responsibilities, judges will consider:

  • Whether the parents have the ability to make joint decisions
  • Whether the relationship between each parent and the child is loving and healthy
  • How splitting responsibility would affect parental contact with the child

Colorado is fairly progressive when it comes to joint parenting, believing that it usually suits a child’s best interest. Unless the parents are opposed to it, the relationship between parents is exceedingly hostile or one parent is unfit (due to drug or alcohol abuse, for example), judges are inclined to allow both parents to share in the responsibility and decision-making process regarding children.

Divorce Matters ”“ Denver Child Custody Lawyers