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Setting up a parenting time plan in Colorado

Studies have shown that children need to have both of their parents in their lives. When they lose touch with one or the other, perhaps following a divorce, it can impact their development. It can also cause emotional damage. This is why it is so important to understand the parenting time -- which is sometimes called visitation -- laws in Colorado.

Two parents can work together to come up with an agreement that they both like. This is often thought of as the best tactic to use, but it is not always possible. If you and your spouse do not agree for whatever reason, it is good to know what the court is going to consider when determining what should be done.

It starts with the best interests of your child. Yes, the desires that you and your spouse have are also going to come into play, but the judge will attempt to put the child first and you second.

If there are multiple children in your family, relationship dynamics that these children have with each other will also be considered. Similarly, depending on the child's age, the judge may look at the connections that the child has in school or in the community. It is not desirable to break off the child's other relationships just to give in to what a parent wants.

One of the biggest hurdle may be provided by the distance that you and your ex-spouse live from one another after your divorce. The judge will take this distance into account and attempt to find a suitable plan, but it may mean that you do not both get equal time with your child.

Source: Colorado Department of Labor and Employment, "Connecting With Your Kids" Jane A. Irvine, Oct. 22, 2014

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