Even if you and your child’s other parent have been successfully raising your children together for several years after the end of the relationship, new circumstances may require a new custody agreement. Fortunately, either parent can request a custody modification in Colorado.
When life changes require a custody agreement that reflects your current situation, you will need the following information to proceed.
Modifying parenting time
When the parent with primary custody will remain the same but the visitation schedule will change, the court must find that this change is in the child’s best interest. This standard applies if you plan to move from unequal to equal parenting time because one parent is seeking more time with the children or if the move is from equal to unequal time because one parent is moving an extended distance from the other parent. Depending on the child’s age, the judge may take his or her preference into account when determining the best interest.
Custody agreement changes that shift custody from one parent to the other must meet elevated standards beyond the best interest of the child. This requires proving one or more of the following circumstances in court:
- Both parents agree on the change.
- The parent who currently has majority custody is planning to relocate with the children and the other parent is seeking majority custody in response.
- The child’s present environment endangers his or her physical health and/or emotional well-being.
Except in the case of endangerment, the court applies a two-year filing limitation on this type of change. For example, if the judge previously ruled on a modification requesting a change of the parent with primary custody, you cannot make another change request within two years of that ruling.
File the Motion to Modify Parenting Time form with your local court clerk office or online. This paperwork carries a $105 filing fee. You can also request a modification of child support at this time if necessary.