Parents who are going through divorce in Colorado are wise to have a basic understanding of how child custody works in their state. It is important to focus on state law, as each state has different rules. In Colorado, courts generally look to the best interests of the child when making a child custody decision. State law also refers to this as a parenting plan.

What is the best interest of the child?

The best interest of the child is a legal term that involves the court reviewing various factors to decide which option would provide the child with the best situation. These factors can include the parent and child’s wishes, the relationship between the parent and child, the child’s adjustment to school and home as well as the mental and physical health of all involved.

The court will review this information and decide about parental responsibilities. This can include determining who the child will live with, setting out how much time each parent will spend with the child and who will have the power to make decisions on behalf of the child. Decisions like those regarding education and healthcare.

What if I disagree with the court’s decision?

There are instances when parents can modify a child custody arrangement. In most cases, a modification will require filing a form with the court. The court will consider a modification in specific situations, such as when both parents agree to a change in the parenting plan or the current arrangement is no longer in the best interest of the child. After the forms are completed and filed with the court, the judge may enter an order allowing the modification or may set a date for a hearing.