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Colorado Springs Family Law Blog

Potential to abuse technology in a divorce

The rate at which Colorado couples find themselves at the end of a marriage seems only to rise as the years pass. However, divorce today is not what it used to be. As technology has permeated so many aspects of our lives, it has also become a factor in many divorces -- and not necessarily in a good way.

Take the example of GPS tracking devices. More and more family law attorneys are seeing cases where divorcing spouses have used GPS trackers to monitor a partner's location -- often by hiding the device in that person's car -- or who have been the victim of this kind of digital spying. This can become even more alarming in the case of an abusive spouse with a restraining order using a tracker to keep tabs on the victim spouse and children.

Consider co-parenting as an option after divorce

A divorce is difficult for children and adults alike. Co-parenting is one thing you may not have been considering, but there is a good reason to reconsider. Yes, you'll have to work well with your spouse, which might be the last thing on your mind, but, for the benefit of your child, this could be the best way to move forward.

Co-parenting has its benefits for children. It means your child sees you and his or her other parent approximately equally. It means fathers and mothers both spend time with their children in formative years and build bonds that hold their relationships together.

Preparing for a same-sex parent adoption in Colorado

After last week's post on our Colorado Springs family law blog concerning child custody questions at the end of a same-sex marriage, let's turn to the subject of same-sex partners who want to formally bring a child into their family. Sometimes, one legal parent of a child may want his or her same-sex partner to adopt the child, so they may raise the child together. Colorado same-sex family law provides for such adoption (Colorado Revised Statutes ยง19-5-200.2 through 19-5-212), even without a civil union.

There are some eligibility requirements. To adopt a child, a same-sex parent must be at least 21 years old. He or she will need to obtain three separate background checks: a state-level fingerprinted criminal background check, a federal fingerprinted criminal background check, and a Department of Human Services TRAILS background check (via the applicant's local office). Should any of these checks indicate a felony record of unlawful sexual behavior, child abuse or other violent crime, the individual will be disqualified from proceeding with an adoption.

Child support question in same-sex divorce case

Gay and lesbian couples in Colorado have availed themselves of the right to legally marry in our state since even before the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling in the Obergefell case. With marriage, some are finding, come a number of legal issues. Unfortunately, same-sex family law is in some cases left trying to catch up to the realities of same-sex marriage.

For example, a lesbian couple married in 2013 and relocated to another state as part of one partner's service in the U.S. military. That partner was called to active duty throughout most of 2015, and while she was deployed, her spouse sought out a sperm donor and became pregnant. Shortly after her deployment ended, the military spouse filed for divorce, and her partner had the baby during the divorce process.

How are child support payments made in El Paso County?

When couples with children divorce, so much time and effort frequently goes into determining the amount of financial support a child will need and which parent will pay how much. Because this period leading up to a court's order for child support is so often the subject of focus, let's take a moment to look at just what happens after child support is awarded. In day-to-day life here in El Paso County, how are child support payments made and received?

First, let's clear up one misconception that some may have. Child support is not paid directly from one parent to the other. One parent doesn't send the other a check, nor do they meet in person to handle the payment. There's no direct electronic payment system, no wires to send. The parents do not have to deal with each other directly at all.

Supporting Colorado Springs clients in alimony matters

After last week's post on our Colorado Springs family law blog, readers may be left feeling like much of what they thought they know about alimony is wrong. The truth is that alimony can be a nuanced issue for a couple to deal with during a divorce, which is why many will turn to a family law professional for support.

In fact, even when we use the term "alimony," we're using it in a general way. Legally speaking, there are three different types of alimony. Restitutional alimony is a limited-time arrangement and it is not intended to support a spouse at the level to which he or she was accustomed while married. Rehabilitative alimony is similarly awarded for a shorter duration with the goal of supporting a divorced partner while he or she prepares with training or education to re-enter the job market.

Should alimony continue from ex-spouse's estate after death?

When a Colorado couple goes through a divorce, there may be certain assumptions made regarding how long alimony and other payments will last. A recent case highlights the importance of clarifying how either individual's death will impact payment arrangements.

When one couple got married in the late 1980's, they had a prenuptial agreement stating that the husband would make regular payments to the wife if they divorced. They payments would last until she died or remarried. The couple did divorce after eight years of marriage, agreed upon the monthly amount (just over $4,300) and payments began.

Emotional preparation can help as you go through a divorce

Getting ready for a divorce takes planning, which is only possible if you know that the petition is going to be filed soon. Many people focus on the physical ways that they can prepare, such as gathering documents, but it is also important that you prepare emotionally for what is to come.

Even if you want the divorce to happen, you will still likely feel some mixed emotions when you are going through the process. Here are some tips to help you feel more in control of what is going on emotionally.

Helping you obtain a favorable child support order

Anyone who has had a child understands that it is expensive to raise kids. As a child ages, their needs and wants change. This can significantly alter how much parents spend on a child each year. When parents in Colorado and elsewhere divorce, these financial needs to not change for the child. However, divorced parents need to carefully assess and address the issue of child support.

In any divorce matter that involves children, child support and child custody tend to go hand in hand. In other words, the amount of physical care a parent provides could alter how much support he or she pays or receives. In cases of joint or shared custody, this amount could be minimal or nothing at all. However, when a parent has primary or sole custody of a child, he or she could receive a significant payment each month to cover the financial needs of the child.

Assistance with same-sex family matters

Although the right to marry applies to all couples in the state of Colorado, same-sex marriages still carry some unique legal difficulties. These types of situations are stressful and uncertain no matter the type of relationship, but same-sex couples often face a different set of challenges regarding child custody and asset division.

Because of these difficulties, seeking the assistance of an experienced attorney is extremely helpful. At Mary Kay Kramer, P.C., we handle each case of same-sex family matters with the compassion, focus, and skill it deserves. We tailor our approach to each case based on the unique elements of the relationship and aim to achieve an optimal result.

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