Skip to Content
Child Custody

About Child Custody and Parental Responsibilities

In any family law case involving children, the issue of child custody will have to be addressed. You may hear lawyers, parents, and even judges referring to this type of child care decision process as “child custody” or “visitation.” However, Colorado law no longer refers to it as such, but rather “Allocation of Parental Responsibilities.” This is divided into two parts: parenting time (physical custody) and decision-making responsibility (legal custody). Like many situations regarding divorce and family law, every case is unique and no single child custody plan works for every situation. The experienced child custody lawyers at The Gasper Law Group can help guide you through the process and protect your rights.

If you are involved in a disputed child custody case or going through a divorce, it is important to understand that courts have significant discretion when making determinations about the Allocation of Parental Responsibilities. For this reason, it is important for you to retain legal counsel as soon as possible. 

To set up a FREE initial consultation to discuss your case with our skilled Colorado Springs child custody lawyers, give is a call at (719) 212-2448 or contact us online today.

Practicing Law In Colorado Springs FOR OVER 20 YEARS
Set up a FREE initial consultation with our office today. Discuss your case with our Colorado Springs Lawyers at
(719) 212-2448 or complete our contact form.

How Physical Custody is Decided in Colorado

Parenting time, or physical custody, refers to the actual time that parents spend with their children. When making decisions about how parenting time will be allocated between parents, courts look to the best interests of the child. Under Colorado Revised Statutes § 14-10-124, a court will consider the following factors when determining the best interests of the child for the purposes of allocating parenting time:

  • The wishes of the parents
  • The child’s wishes (if they are mature enough to express independent and reasonable preferences)
  • The interaction and interrelationship of the child with their siblings, parents, and anyone else who may significantly affect the child’s best interests
  • The child’s adjustment to their home, community, and school
  • The mental and physical health of everyone involved (however, a disability cannot be used by itself to limit or deny parenting time)
  • The willingness of both parties to keep things amicable and encourage the sharing of love, affection, and contact between the child and the other party (except in cases where the court determines that a party is acting to protect the child from witnessing domestic violence or from being a victim of child abuse or neglect or domestic violence)
  • Whether the way in which the parties have been involved with the child in the past reflects a system of values, mutual support, and the commitment of time
  • How close the parties involved with the case live from one another as this related to the practical issues of shared parenting time
  • Whether each party can prioritize the child’s needs over their own needs

How a Custody Attorney Can Help You

A custody attorney, also known as a family law attorney, specializes in legal matters related to child custody and visitation rights. Here are some ways a custody attorney can help you:

  • Legal Advice: A custody attorney can provide you with legal advice on your rights and responsibilities regarding child custody and visitation.
  • Negotiation: Your attorney can negotiate with the other party or their attorney to reach a custody agreement that is in the best interests of the child.
  • Court Representation: If you are unable to reach an agreement, your attorney can represent you in court proceedings to determine custody and visitation arrangements.
  • Document Preparation: Your attorney can help you prepare and file the necessary legal documents, such as custody petitions and parenting plans.
  • Mediation: In some cases, your attorney may recommend mediation as a way to resolve custody disputes amicably.
  • Enforcement: If the other party violates a custody order, your attorney can help you enforce the order and seek remedies through the court.
  • Modification: If circumstances change and you need to modify an existing custody order, your attorney can help you file a petition for modification.
  • Protection: Your attorney can help protect your rights and interests throughout the custody process, ensuring that the best interests of the child are prioritized.

Overall, a custody attorney can provide you with the legal guidance and representation you need to navigate the complexities of child custody and visitation laws and ensure that your rights and the best interests of your child are protected.

Continue Reading Read Less
Representing Individuals in Colorado Springs & Surrounding Areas LONG & SUCCESSFUL HISTORY
If you are in need of a lawyer to represent you against criminal charges, please contact us for a FREE CONSULTATION. We are available 7 Days a Week/ 24 Hours a Day.

How Legal Custody is Decided in Colorado

Courts also consider the best interests of the child when making determinations about how to allocate decision-making responsibilities between parents. Decision-making responsibility, or legal custody, refers to a parent’s right to make major decisions regarding medical treatment, religion, education, and extracurricular activities. In determining the best interests of the child with respect to decision-making responsibilities, a judge will consider the same factors as when making decisions about parenting time, as well as the following:

  • The ability of the parties to cooperate and to make decisions jointly
  • The pattern of involvement of the parties with the child in the past, and whether or not it reflects an ability to make decisions that will provide a positive and nourishing relationship with the child
  • Whether an allocation of mutual decision-making responsibility on a number of issues will promote continuing contact between the child and each of the parents

A history of domestic violence or child abuse carries additional and special considerations for the court when it comes to decision-making authority. If there is a history of domestic violence or child abuse in your case, you should discuss the matter with your attorney.

What Makes a Parent Unfit in Colorado?

In Colorado, determining parental fitness is a critical aspect of child custody and visitation decisions. An unfit parent may be found unfit by a court, affecting their ability to have custody or unsupervised visitation. There are several factors including: 

  • Substance Abuse: A parent who has a history of substance abuse, particularly when it threatens the child's well-being, may be deemed unfit as a parent.
  • Domestic Violence: Evidence of domestic violence, whether directed towards the child or the other parent, may result in a finding of unfitness.
  • Child Endangerment: Conditions or behaviors that endanger the child's physical or emotional well-being, such as neglect, abuse, or exposing the child to dangerous environments, can lead to a determination of unfitness.
  • Mental Health Issues: Untreated or severe mental health issues that interfere with the ability to provide proper care and support for the child may impact a parent's fitness.
  • Criminal Activity: Engaging in criminal activities, especially those that can pose a risk to the child, can be considered in evaluating parental fitness.
  • Failure to Comply with Court Orders: Consistently failing to adhere to court orders, including visitation schedules or custody arrangements, may reflect negatively on parental fitness.

It's important to note that the court considers the best interests of the child when determining parental fitness, and decisions are made on a case-by-case basis. Seeking legal advice from an experienced Colorado Springs child custody attorney is crucial for parents navigating custody disputes to ensure their rights are protected and the child's well-being is prioritized.

  • Committed to the Community
  • Helping People First
  • Offering Payment Plans
    "The professionalism, guidance, and candor I’ve received from each person in this law firm has been beyond reproach."

    I’m not one to have an extensive experience with law firms or lawyers and court in general. However, the professionalism, guidance, and candor I’ve received from each person in this law firm have been beyond reproach. Anytime, I mean, anytime, I’ve had a question about my case and the way forward, I was met with a friendly and constructive conversation about my case. There was never a doubt in my mind, that I made the right choice when I selected this law firm to represent me. Caryn and Stacie have been a wonderful blessing to my life and my legal proceedings. If you are looking for a no-BS law firm that has a significant reputation in the Springs area, I absolutely recommend this one. Even though I hope to not have to deal with this again, fingers crossed and every lucky charm, I’d trust this law firm with my representation to handle the hard stuff and give me ease with court proceedings. Thank you all for what you do and have done for me, my family, and my career. Bless you all.

    - Steve S.
    "Thank you so much! You helped complete our family and we are forever grateful."
    Christine, Kris, and Ebony are amazing and compassionate. We enjoyed every interaction. Gasper Law firm keeps appropriate communication and not in excess which keeps our cost low. We are so very grateful. Even if an unexpected turn in our guardianship hearing they remained diligent to ensure things were done in a timely manner. Thank you so much! You helped complete our family and we are forever grateful.
    - Misty M.
    "They took care of my case in a very timely manner and made it feel like my traffic ticket was their number one and only priority."
    Caryn Adams, Stacey Sadler and the rest of the team at the Gasper law group are an amazing, courteous, compassionate, and very helpful group of talented individuals. I was in a bind and during my consultation I explained my situation and they went above and beyond my expectations. They took care of my case in a very timely manner and made it feel like my traffic ticket was their number one and only priority. I have never been treated with such respect and compassion. I definitely recommend talking to them about any of your legal needs.
    - Scott R.
    "I highly recommend you use them to make your life easier. I couldn’t ask for a better team!"
    I used the Gasper Law Group when I was going through my divorce and child custody case. I got the outcome I wanted, Carrie Kelly and Kimberly Lucas made my life 10x easier considering i didn’t know what I was doing. They were patient, and caring and even made me laugh a few times. I highly recommend you use them to make your life easier. I couldn’t ask for a better team! I’m now happily divorced and got my kiddo 50/50! You guys rock and if anything comes up in the future, I’ll be sure to use you guys! Thanks so much gasper law group for the fast and professional services!
    - Micheala E.
    "From the start, they treated me incredibly well and were very open about everything from my situation."
    The Gasper Law Group was fantastic. From the start, they treated me incredibly well and were very open about everything from my situation. They were incredibly attentive to me and my case and made sure I fully understood everything while supporting me in every way they could. Caryn was AMAZING in handling my case. Her knowledge, confidence, and attentiveness were second to none. I would recommend them to anyone for any situation.
    - Jason E.
    "If you need any Legal advice or assistance reach out to the Gasper Law Group. 5 star service."
    Gasper Law Group is great to work with. I recently did Estate Planning and they were awesome. Explained everything thoroughly. Emily, Jack, Therese , Holly, and Emily are all very professional. If you need any Legal advice or assistance reach out to the Gasper Law Group. 5 star service.
    - Ruby D.
    "A courteous, respectful, and efficient group in all phases and aspects of due diligence"
    Highly professional team of attorneys and paralegal staff who work hard to reach the best outcomes for their clients. A courteous, respectful, and efficient group in all phases and aspects of due diligence, and discovery with effective preparation of cases entrusted to them. The partner representing me, Ms. Caryn Adams was truly impressive in her knowledge of the law, her empathy, and her care for getting the best possible resolution in my favor in pre-trial negotiation. And I have no doubt she and her team would be just as dedicated and efficient in more complex defense situations. I recommend them highly and without reservation in all areas of the law in which they are eminently qualified.
    - Salah H.
    "I highly recommend that you not waste your time hiring other attorneys and hire the Gasper Law Group."
    After an absolutely crazy incident that could not have been seen almost anywhere besides a movie. I received some serious charges and was in search of an attorney. They would not only represent me but need to do the right thing because it's the right thing...
    - Lance F.

Colorado Child Custody Laws

In Colorado, Parental Responsibility can be primary or joint. Colorado law recognizes that it is generally in a child’s best interest to have frequent contact with both parents and to have both parents participate in child-rearing. Typically, if a parent has less than 90 overnight visits with the child, the court considers the other parent to have primary parental responsibility. If you and the other parent have an equal amount of overnight visits with the child, the court considers you both to share joint parental responsibility. Contrary to popular belief, neither parent begins the process with a greater right to custody than the other.

Child Custody Modification

If the court has already established a child custody agreement through a divorce or a stand-alone custody case, there may be options to modify the agreement. However, parents must prove modifications will benefit a child, and that they are justified due to changing circumstances. This may include changes to a child’s physical or emotional needs, a parent’s injury or illness, criminal activity or domestic violence, parental relocation, and other major life changes.

Contact Our Colorado Springs Child Custody Lawyers

Disputes regarding the allocation of parental responsibility and visitation can be difficult to resolve and are often the most emotional legal issues families face. For this reason, it is extremely important for parents who are involved in a child custody dispute to retain an experienced custody lawyer as soon as possible.

From child custody modification to establishing paternity, our family law attorneys in Colorado Springs can help you understand your rights. The Gasper Law Group has handled countless child custody arrangements and disputes and can advocate for what’s best for the child and you.

For a free consultation with a Colorado Springs child custody attorney, call us at (719) 212-2448 or complete our contact form.

Continue Reading Read Less

Your Dedicated Legal Representation

  • Please enter your first name.
  • Please enter your last name.
  • Please enter your phone number.
    This isn't a valid phone number.
  • This isn't a valid phone number.
  • Please enter your email address.
    This isn't a valid email address.
  • Please enter your address.
  • Please enter your City.
  • Please enter your Zip Code.
  • Please make a selection.
  • Please enter a message.
  • Please make a selection.
  • Please make a selection.
  • By submitting, you agree to be contacted about your request & other information using automated technology. Message frequency varies. Msg & data rates may apply. Text STOP to cancel. Acceptable Use Policy