When divorced parents are willing to communicate and work together for the sake of their child, joint legal custody can be an effective arrangement. Even when parents in Colorado or any other state don’t think that they can work together, such an arrangement may give them the motivation to try to do so. Although there is no trail for divorced parents to take when raising their children, this task can be difficult even when the parents stay married.
In some cases, having the other parent around can be welcoming during such challenging times. Furthermore, the children benefit when they see adults working together to solve problems. Parents may feel as if having joint legal custody opens them up to being manipulated or that they aren’t consulted on some decisions. However, as parents learn to communicate, it can become easier to make them together in a manner that benefits the child.
Parents should understand that having joint legal custody does not mean that they will get joint physical custody as well. It is not uncommon for a child to stay with one parent more often while both parents get to make decisions related to his or her upbringing. As with any custody decision, the best interest of the child determines who gets to be with him or her at any given time.
In a divorce case, it may be a good idea to speak with a family law professional. Doing so may help parents understand how to ask for and obtain custody or the ability to otherwise be in a child’s life. An attorney may work with an individual to create a plan that allows a parent make decisions on a child’s behalf or generally play a role in influencing his or her upbringing.