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Maintaining parental rights after a divorce

It has become increasingly common for Colorado divorce courts to award parents joint legal custody of their children. In theory this allows both parents to have input into certain major decisions affecting their children, such as education and health care. However, this doesn't always turn out that way, especially when one parent has primary physical custody and a parenting plan has been adopted.

For instance, a parent may neglect to tell the noncustodial parent about an event at school or when a doctor appointment may take place. This could cause the noncustodial parent to miss out on a parent-teacher conference or lack key information about a child's health or well-being. By neglecting to tell the other parent when or where an event may be taking place, he or she is not necessarily violating the terms of a court order.

There are times when miscommunication could result in a parent not being able to spend time with a child as scheduled. Even in the most detailed of parenting plans, situations may arise that couldn't have been anticipated. This could result in a parent not sharing a holiday or special event as planned. However, it is important to note that intentionally keeping children away from their mother or father is generally not in their best interests.

Many child custody disputes can be resolved informally through negotiations or with the assistance of a neutral third party in mediation. However, this is not always possible, and the court may have to get involved. A parent who wishes to seek the enforcement of visitation rights or a similar issue may want to have the assistance of a family law attorney in filing the motion with the court.

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Cooper, Tanis & Armas, P.C.
42 Garden Center
Broomfield, CO 80020