Many people go into a sort of shock during divorce. People can behave in uncharacteristic ways. Some people can become more aggressive and angry during divorce. Others may shut down entirely, getting swept away in the process. Then, when the divorce is over, they realize that things definitely did not go their way in court. Everything from asset division to child custody could be skewed to favor the spouse who was more aggressive during the divorce.
All kinds of factors, from outside legal issues, chemical dependence or even depression from the divorce itself could result in one parent failing to assert his or her parental rights in court. These people still deserve to have healthy and ongoing relationships with their children.
If you're part of that second group, and you've recently realized that your child custody arrangements aren't favorable for you or the kids, it may be time to look into a modification. If the other parent won't agree to change certain terms of your custody agreement, you may need to ask the courts to modify it.
Colorado requires a parenting plan
In order to share custody and move forward with a divorce where there are minor children, divorcing couples need to submit a parenting plan to the courts. If you simply agreed to the terms set by your ex, you may now realize that you should have had more input. Parenting plans generally cover two critical topics, which are decision making authority and custodial time with the children. They also address child support and other topics.
In some cases, your ex may hold all of the legal decision-making authority for your children, including important medical and educational decisions. You may not agree with how certain issues get handled, leading you to request a modification that allows your input into these decisions as well. In some cases, your ex may also have authority over when you get to visit or care for your children. That could result in isolation or weakening of the parent-child relationship. Sometimes, you have to go back to court to ask for more time with your kids.
The courts want what's best for the children
In general, when setting up child custody situations and visitation during a divorce, courts in Colorado seek to promote the best interest of the children. Except in cases of neglect or abuse, the best interests of any child typically include an ongoing relationship with both parents. Courts may seek to evenly divide parenting time or at least ensure both parents will be actively involved with the kids.
If your ex is refusing visitation or otherwise making co-parenting more difficult, you may need the courts to intervene. Your children will be healthier and happier with both parents regularly parts of their lives. Getting a modification that upholds your parental rights can benefit everyone in the family in the long run.