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Advice for Parents about Custody and Domestic Violence

Sunday, 21 February 2010

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Until recently, the presence of domestic abuse between two parents was not a consideration that judges would use when deciding on parenting time and legal custody.  As a Colorado Springs divorce lawyer, I have felt the frustration of this mindset on behalf of many clients.  The reason for this was that the court believed that one parent’s violence against the other was not a reflection of their parenting abilities.  How any judge would believe that domestic abuse committed by one of their parents would not have a fundamental impact on the children’s well being still amazes me

Today, Colorado family courts know better, and they are addressing the issue of domestic violence in divorce cases as a factor for determining custody.  After all, how can a person be a good parent if his children fear for their own safety as well as their mother’s?  It is safe to say that any violent parent who engages in criminal acts against a family member is not a fit parent.  Any parent who puts the health and well being of his wife and children in jeopardy is unable to make sound parenting decisions, but if you are a victim of domestic abuse it can be challenging to present this type of evidence to a judge in the presence of your abuser.

An experienced attorney can make sure these considerations are presented to a judge properly so that the right decisions can be made about parenting time.  In many cases, the judge will order supervised parenting time to the abusive parent, if any.  Plus, a third-party mediator will get involved to prevent face-to-face negotiations between the parents.  If you are a victim of domestic abuse and involved in a divorce action, a Colorado Springs divorce lawyer can represent you in all matters relating to custody and parenting.

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