After Colorado parents have divorced and the case has been settled, child custody and a visitation schedule could still come up for dispute if there is a request for a modification. To modify an order that was previously entered, there are certain circumstances under which it will be done. Understanding how the law deals with these situations is important for the parents and the child. Legal help is advisable in these situations.
A modification will not be done unless the court is presented with facts that have come about after the previous decree and changes are necessary to serve the best interests of the child. This change must be with the parent with whom the child spends most of his or her time. The decree will remain the same but for several circumstances.
In a simple case, the parties will agree to the modification. When this happens, it is generally amicable and the parents are seeking to do what is best for the child. If the child has been integrated into a family that is making the motion to change the visitation order and the other parent has consented, this too will warrant a modification.
If the party with whom the child resides plans to relocate and that will significantly alter the geographical connection between the child and the other parent, there will be a court hearing as to the modifications. This will be granted priority on the docket. The important factors as to the child's best interests will be considered. Factors can include domestic violence and if it happened before or after the decree. Other factors such as why the parent is relocating, why there is an objection, the relationship between the child and parent since the previous order, educational opportunities at the new location, if there is extended family at the new location, what advantages there will be for the child to stay with the relocating parent, how the child will be impacted by the move, and if a reasonable parenting time can be adhered to.
Modifying a visitation schedule is not something the court takes lightly. The best interests of the child are paramount and when there is an attempt by the parents to make these changes, having legal help is crucial. A law firm that is deft at handling divorce, child custody, visitation and more can be of assistance.