We’re going to discuss with you how I can get full custody of my child. This is a question that often comes up in dealing with either divorced, legal separation,or child custody laws in the state of Colorado when parents haven’t been married and they want to go through a parenting type of a case, it’s called an allocation of parental responsibilities. I always urge parents to have court orders in place if they are parenting a child, they haven’t gone through a divorce but they share a child because of how the laws are written and what the pitfalls maybe for a parent and a child when they simply have no court orders. It’s always important if you’re going through one of these situations where you’ve broken up with somebody and the 2 of you have a child, and you have no court orders whatsoever, it’s always urged that you have something in writing approved by the court so that your parental rights are enforced. If you do not have a court order your parental rights may not be enforced because there is no court to goto, to say that you want certain parental rights, parenting time, visits, et cetera.
Most of the time full custody of a child means that a child has been endangered somehow by a parent, and the court when it recognizes that level of endangerment will award full custody to a safe parent. I’ll give you an example,a lot of times we have these cases where 1 parent has a drug addiction or a long history of alcohol abuse and cannot safely parent a child. They may have drug arrests, they may have been in rehab, they have for some reason not been able to successfully overcome their drug addiction. In those kinds of situations the court has the power and the authority to award parental responsibility full residential custody to a safe parent in the hopes that the parent who needs alcohol or drug help will get that help and recover so that they can co parent a child. Those are the most likely scenarios that we see, but you should always check with an attorney who’s got experience and qualifications in child custody matters to ask whether or not the facts in your case would qualify for full custody.