When a Colorado couple has ended their union, but shares a child, there are inevitable issues that must be addressed as part of their divorce settlement. The best interests of the child are, obviously, paramount, but determining parenting time is one of the most important factors with the care and nurturing of the child. Understanding what the law says about the child’s best interests and parenting time is one of the key factors that the parents should grasp as the case moves forward.
Whether it stems from motions from either party or the court deciding to make the motions on its own, there can be parenting time provisions that the court views as being in the best interests of the child. A caveat is that if the court has a hearing and finds that parenting time for one or both parties would constitute a danger to the child or impair development, other provisions can be made. If it is found that the child will be put in danger or the development will be hindered, there can be a restriction in the parenting time.
There are various factors that will be considered when determining parenting time. These include: the parents’ wishes with parenting time; the child’s wishes if he or she is found to be of sufficient maturity to express them; the way in which the child interacts and the relationship the child has with the parents, siblings, and anyone else who might impact the child’s best interests; how the child is adjusting to school, home and the community; if there are concerns about mental and physical health with a disability not being the basis for restriction or denial of parenting time; if the parties encourage a positive relationship with one another; if there was a past involvement with a caring environment; how close the parents live to one another; and if the parties can put the child’s needs and desires above their own.
Divorce is difficult in any case, but it is especially so when there are children involved. It can be hard for the parents and even harder for the children. Parenting time is a critical factor in these issues and the law seeks to deal with it as effectively and efficiently as possible. When there are concerns or issues with parenting time, it is imperative to have legal help from a law firm that navigates cases involving family law and divorce to get a reasonable resolution.