How Do I Get Emergency Child Custody?

Changing a child custody arrangement can be a long and complicated process. But what if there is an emergency and you need custody of your child right away? Luckily, there are specific child custody laws in place for this exact scenario. Before we get into how to get emergency child custody, it is important to know what it is.

Emergency Child Custody

Filing a motion for emergency child custody allows a court to act immediately to suspend all unsupervised parenting time. There are a few restrictions, however. The court can only grant emergency child custody if your child is being put in danger by their other parent. This endangerment can be emotional or physical. Some examples are physical abuse, sexual abuse, excessive drinking or drug use around your child, mental health concerns for the parent, domestic violence, or even neglect. In addition, if your child’s other parent isn’t necessarily the one endangering your child, emergency custody can still be granted. If your child’s other parent has friends or a significant other who endanger your child, this falls under child endangerment on behalf of the parent.

How do I get emergency child custody?

To start the process of getting emergency child custody, you would first have to file a Motion to Restrict Parenting Time with the court. Once you have filed your motion, the court will immediately order that all contact between the parent and child be monitored by a third party. The court will then schedule a hearing in the next 14 days to review the motion. At the hearing, both parents will be allowed to present any evidence they have regarding the endangerment of the child. This can include pictures, emails or texts, and any people who have witnessed the endangerment or lack thereof. The court will then make a ruling on the motion. The judge will either deny the motion, continue the restrictions put in place when the motion was filed, or change the restrictions to be less strict or stricter.

It is important to note that there are penalties for wrongful accusations, including, but not limited to, paying legal fees for the other side. It is vital that you do not file a motion like this out of spite. To avoid this, it is helpful to consult an attorney to make sure that what you are claiming is substantiated. A Divorce Matters attorney can also help you navigate the entire process with ease and expertise.

How Much Will A Divorce Cost Me?

Contrary to popular belief, divorce does not always have to be expensive. One of the biggest influencing factors in the cost of a divorce is the complexity of your specific case. These complexities come in a few different forms, and each essentially affects how much time needs to be spent on a particular case and therefore how expensive that case will be. Some of these things will be within your control, and others won’t – this is why it is important to reach out and schedule an initial consultation with an attorney. In your initial consultation, our attorneys can go over your specific set of circumstances with you, and they will be able to give you an idea of what your specific case might cost and how to manage those costs.

 

What will affect the cost of my divorce?

 

As mentioned, there are several main determining factors that will affect the total cost of your divorce. Some of these include:

  1. The amount of assets involved
  2. Whether or not you have children
  3. How contentious (think conflict) your case is

These factors all increase the complexity of your case and therefore increase the total cost.

How you can keep the cost down?

 

There are a few ways you can help keep the cost down in your case. The most popular way is to utilize our unbundled legal services, which involves having an attorney help with one specific aspect of your case, such as drafting and reviewing documents for you, offering coaching or legal advice, or communicating with other parties, opposing counsel, and the courts. However, this option is not always a good fit, especially if your case has any of the factors listed above that tend to increase costs. Another way to keep costs down is to work on coming to an amicable agreement with your ex through mediation or arbitration. This will save time and money on going to court and is often easier on your emotional well-being in the end as well.

 

Every case is different, so it important to speak with an attorney to get a better idea of how much your specific situation will cost and what your options might be. Contact Divorce Matters today to set up an initial consultation with one of our many experienced attorneys who can help put you and your family on the path to a successful future after divorce.

Get to Know Our Denver Tech Center Office

About This Office

 

Our Denver Tech Center location is one of our four offices here in Colorado, and also serves as our headquarters. Recently we relocated just up the street into a brand-new, larger office space that can accommodate our growing team and is much easier to navigate to. We love our new space because it allows us to continue growing and expanding while offering a better location for our clients.

 

Who Are We?

 

We are a client-focused practice that understands that divorce, child support, and other family law issues can be extremely stressful and difficult. That’s why we are here to take away some of that stress and difficulty. Every day we uphold our values of integrity, tenacity, compassion, and excellence when assisting and representing our clients. Our firm won’t treat you like just another client or another case. We treat every client with compassion and tailor every legal approach to the specific needs of each of our clients. This ensures that you are set up for a future that you and your family can look forward to.

 

Why Our Denver Tech Center Office?

 

Our Denver Tech Center office is the perfect location for anyone located in Denver and any of the surrounding metropolitan cities such as Aurora, Centennial, Littleton, Castle Rock, Highlands Ranch, and many more. Our other locations are located in Lakewood, Fort Collins, and Colorado Springs, ensuring that we can serve our clients all up and down the Front Range. If none of our offices are convenient to where you live, we are also able to accommodate virtual consultations and meetings, and our attorneys will travel if necessary for our clients.

 

If you would like to set up a consultation with one of our many experienced attorneys at this location or any of our other three locations contact us here or give us a call at (720) 542-6142.

How Do I Pick the Right Attorney For Me?

One of the first questions you might ask yourself when you are searching for an attorney is “how do I know which attorney I’ll work the best with?” or “who will align with me and get me the best results in my case?” This is a very important question to consider because if you and your attorney don’t align then you might not be satisfied with their service or your end result. We never want that to be the case. Here are a few criteria to consider when deciding what attorney to hire to make sure that you and your attorney will be the best fit together.

 

Personality –

One of the most important factors to consider when deciding on hiring an attorney is how their personality would work with yours. When you are going through a divorce, you will end up sharing some of the most important and private details of your life with your attorney. Finding someone who complements you and can be a good partner is a key component to a successful attorney-client relationship.

Situation –

Another very important factor to consider when finding the right attorney is your specific situation. Every attorney has their strengths and areas of family law they practice more than others. If your case is very complex, you might look for an attorney who has more experience handling complex cases. On the other hand, if your situation is a very emotional one, it might be best to find a more empathetic attorney that you feel you can talk to and connect with for support. Another example would be if there is a lot of contention between you and your ex; in this case, you might be looking for a more aggressive attorney that will fight for you in times that get tense. Every situation is different, therefore it is key to find an attorney that will represent you in the way you need to be represented to achieve the most successful result in the end.

Cost –

Lastly, one thing to always keep in mind is how much you can afford when hiring an attorney. Of course, this always depends on each individual case and what you need the attorney to help you with. One of the most important factors that can affect the cost of your case is how contentious the separation is. If you and your ex can agree on most things through mediation, this will keep costs down compared to a case that goes to court. Another factor is what services you need legal help with. In some cases, you may only need unbundled legal services, but other cases will require full representation.

 

Finding an attorney with the right mix of personality, experience, and cost to help you with your divorce case is an important step in the divorce process. At Divorce Matters, we understand the importance of this decision. We match our clients with our attorneys based on all of these considerations, to ensure we deliver the best possible legal representation to every client.

If you’d like to get to know more about our attorneys visit their profiles here.

Modifying Child Custody When Moving Out of Denver, CO

If you are currently divorced and share a minor child with your ex-spouse, you likely have a parenting plan in place that allocates parental responsibilities, including important decision-making responsibilities for the child as well as parenting time, or when each parent physically cares for and spends time with the child. But what happens if you apply for and are offered a new job that requires you to move out of Denver? And does the answer to that question change if you are simply moving elsewhere in the state of Colorado as opposed to another state?

The matter of relocation can be complicated for parents in Denver, especially when the parents do not agree that a relocation is in the best interests of the child. We will discuss the process of relocation and how a parent can seek to modify parenting time.

Distance of the Move and How It Affects a Relocation

If you are simply moving to another house in the Denver city limits, or if you are moving to a nearby suburb like Holly Hills or Highlands Ranch, you likely will not need to seek permission for your relocation. However, according to Colorado law (C.R.S. § 14-10-129), when one of the parents intends to relocate with the child to a home that significantly changes the geographical ties between the child and the other parent, then the parent seeking to move must inform the other parent and begin taking steps toward a lawful relocation.

To be clear, if you want to move to a new home in the general Denver area, it is unlikely that the move would substantially change the geographical ties between your child and the other parent. However, moving farther away””whether it is to another city in Colorado that is some distance away or to another state””then you will need to do the following:

  • Provide the other parent with written notice, as soon as it is practicable, of your intent to relocate;
  • Provide the other parent with the location of where you intend to reside and your reason for the relocation;
  • Provide a proposed revised parenting time plan; and
  • Schedule a court hearing for a modification of parenting time.

Motion for a Relocation

If the other parent agrees to the modification, the process is much easier. However, if the other parent does not agree, you will need to seek permission from the court. When you seek to modify a parenting time plan in Denver with the permission of the court, you will need to file a motion for relocation. In determining whether to grant your motion, the court will decide whether the relocation is in the best interests of the child. In order to make that determination, the court will look at a number of different factors, including but not limited to:

  • Reasons you want to relocate with your child;
  • Reasons the other parent objects to the relocation;
  • History and quality of your relationship with the child since the parenting time order took effect;
  • History and quality of the other parent’s relationship with the child since the parenting time order took effect;
  • Educational opportunities for your child at your current location and at the new location;
  • Advantages for the child to remain with the primary caregiver;
  • Anticipated impact of the move on your child;
  • Whether court will be able to revise the parenting time schedule in a reasonable manner if it permits the relocation; and
  • Other factors involved in determining the best interests of the child.

While moving can be difficult on children, as an article in Psychology Today suggests, this fact alone does not mean that a relocation is not in the child’s best interests.

Contact a Denver Child Custody Attorney

If you have questions about relocation or other aspects of your parenting time plan, an experienced child custody lawyer in Denver can assist you. Contact Divorce Matters today.

Will Recreational Marijuana Use Affect My Divorce Proceedings?

In 2012, Colorado voters passed Amendment 64, which put the state on the leading edge of liberalizing marijuana laws. Though it is still not allowed under federal law, recreational use of cannabis is permitted in Colorado.

This complex legal framework raises a number of questions. For example, if you are getting divorced in Denver, CO, you may be wondering how recreational marijuana could impact the proceedings. In child custody and visitation proceedings, use of marijuana ”” along with the use of any other impairing substance ”” could potentially be a factor in the case.

How Recreational Marijuana Use Might Impact Child Custody Cases

Under Colorado law (C.R.S. § 14-10-124), child custody cases are resolved under the state’s best interests of the child standard. Simply put, Colorado courts are instructed to make determinations in accordance with what is best for the health, safety, emotional well-being, and social development of the child. In doing so, family law judges can look to many different factors ”” including recreational marijuana use.

To be clear, recreational marijuana use will not automatically disqualify a parent from gaining custody. Instead, it may simply be a factor in the case. In considering this issue, the most useful comparator is alcohol use. While it is certainly legal to drink, alcohol use can still be in an issue in child custody/child visitation disputes. If evidence is presented that shows that a parent’s alcohol use (or alternatively, their recreational marijuana use) adversely affects their ability to provide stability and safety for their child, then that fact may be used against them in child custody proceedings.

Be Ready to Show You Can Provide a Great Environment for Your Child

If you are going through a child custody or child visitation dispute in Colorado, the most important thing that you need to know is that you must be able to show that you can provide a healthy, happy, and safe environment for your child. Colorado courts are primarily interested in what is best for the children.

Evidence of recreational marijuana use does not mean that a parent is irresponsible. However, if there is any evidence that the marijuana use can be linked to poor or inattentive parenting, then the marijuana use will become a factor in the child custody case. For example, if a parent got behind the wheel while intoxicated on marijuana or if they repeatedly forgot to pick up their child because they were smoking marijuana, that will be a major strike against them in any child custody or child visitation proceeding.

Contact Our Denver Divorce Attorneys Today

At Divorce Matters, our top-rated Lakewood divorce attorneys are committed to providing our clients trusted, reliable family law advice when they need it most. If you have questions about recreational marijuana use and divorce, we can help.

To set up a fully confidential family law consultation, please do not hesitate to contact our law office at (720) 580-6745. With locations in Greenwood Village, Lakewood, and Fort Collins, we represent clients throughout Colorado.

 

How To Give Your Child Emotional Support Through Divorce

If you are facing divorce or perhaps already going through it, then you know that no matter what happens it will be something that affects your children. This is perfectly normal and there is a natural grieving process that they will go through as they deal with their emotions around your separation. There are ways you can help make sure that your children have the support they need during this time.

The first is to make sure that they know you are there if they need to talk about it. The urge to keep it hush-hush can be strong if you feel like avoiding the topic would be less painful for them. However, letting them know you are available to talk to about it without forcing them to gives them the space they need to process their emotions and feel safe enough to approach you if they have questions or need to share something.

One of the best things you can do for your kids is to try and work out an amicable and conflict free co-parenting plan. Of course, this isn’t always an option depending on the individual situation but if you can work to settle your differences with your ex-spouse for the sake of your kids it will go a really long way in helping them deal with their emotions about the divorce.

Finally, don’t be afraid to get yourself and/or your child professional help if either of you find that you continue to struggle with the divorce in a manner that seems unhealthy. Talking to a counselor or therapist is a great way to learn the tools needed to cope with the stress associated with divorce.

Enjoying Time With Your Children On A Single Parent’s Budget

After divorce money can be tight on a single parent’s budget, but you know how important it is that you still spend time participating in activities with your children. You just don’t have to break the bank to do it! There are plenty of fun ways to spend time with your little ones without spending a ton.

One of those ways is to take your kids out on a hike. Plan your route ahead of time based on their experience and how far they can go and then spend the time on your hike pointing out wildlife and spending quality time catching up with them. If you are feeling particularly adventurous you might even bring a tent along and spend an evening with them around the campfire.

Another great way to spend time with your kiddos is to have a movie night in! Grab a couple of age-appropriate classics and settle in with some popcorn and candy. You could even set up a fun fort with them ahead of time for them to watch the movie from.

Perhaps your kids are old enough to begin teaching them how to cook. This is a great time to start showing them the basics of nutrition and the importance of home-cooked meals. Talk them through the recipes and cooking processes as you go and eventually have them start doing it. Soon enough they will know how to cook for themselves in a safe and nutritious manner.

There are always great ways to spend time together with your children enjoying new experiences, don’t be afraid to get out there and find them!

If you are looking to find out more about what your maintenance or child support might look like when going through a divorce so you can better plan for your financial future, Divorce Matters offers a free app that can help. Visit us at www.divorce-matters.com/apps and visit either the Google Play or iTunes stores to download our free Child Support and Maintenance Calculator App.

Parenting Mistakes To Avoid When Going Through Divorce

Divorce can be difficult on your family but it is extremely important not to find yourself hurting your children in the process. They are most important to protect during this time of transition and there are a few things to remind yourself of every time you are interacting with them.

First, make sure you understand the terms of your custody agreement. If you want to make changes be sure to go through the proper channels to make those changes. If you feel like your custody agreement isn’t being honored or you’d like to make changes, contact your divorce attorney for more information.

Second, don’t try and force them to take sides between you and your ex, no matter what your situation is. They are too young to be handling anything of this emotional magnitude and as their parent it is your place to protect them from this strife as much as possible. To them, they still have two parents and might want to keep it that way no matter what you want. Allow them the space to express what they want without trying to influence them.

Another very important piece of advice to follow, do not bad mouth your ex-partner in front of your children. Not only can this be psychologically damaging to them, but it can also cause rifts between you and them or your spouse and them. This action can come back to hurt you in future custody proceedings.

Finally, try to not let the stress of the divorce and its toll on you affect your relationship with your children. As difficult as it may be right now, protecting your relationship with your children is paramount and your children can be a source of comfort and love.