It’s not uncommon for service members to have custody or visitation rights with children after a divorce, but what are the military fathers’ rights? When the other parent is not the service member’s spouse, there must be clear child custody arrangements. Military service creates absences that often threaten to undermine the Colorado custody laws and fathers’ rights. With a qualified family lawyer in Colorado, the stress is relieved on both the parents and the children. Call us to learn more about the military fathers’ rights law in Colorado to protect your best interests.
Can a Military Father Get Full Custody?
The judge decides custody based on what’s best for the children. If that means that living with the military father is the best plan, then that’s what will happen. A military fathers’ rights is more complicated because your absences due to service are not legally entitled to count against you in the proceedings. Of course, if you aren’t home a lot as the military father requesting custody, but your other spouse is, it might provide more stability for the children to live with them. If both parents are in the military, the judge has to determine where the children will receive the best care.
How Does a Judge Decide Custody?
The judge always decides what is in the best interests of the child. Just because the “best interests of the child” law requires that the court focus on the child’s needs, it doesn’t neglect the military fathers’ rights entirely. The first consideration, however, will always be what agreement protects the child best.
Child Custody when Father is Deployed
When both parents share joint physical custody, and the father is deployed, the civilian parent will take the child during the time that the service member is absent. This is only a temporary arrangement and doesn’t negate the military fathers’ rights.
Child Custody when Both Parents are Deployed
If both parents are in the military, there must be a plan in place regarding the child’s care if both parents should get deployed. This plan should be looked at by both respected lawyers to ensure that the child’s best interest and your rights are also protected.
What If My Ex-Spouse Tries to Change Our Custody Agreement While I’m Deployed?
The military fathers’ rights are protected by the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA). One of the guidelines is an automatic stay of any civil legal matter that involves the deployed parent. If your ex files for a custody change while you are away, the case is held for a set amount of time, usually 90 days. You get a notification that it occurred, but nothing will happen during that frozen time. It’s best to have a fathers’ rights attorney in place to help you handle this matter appropriately.
Military Parent Protective Acts:
The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA)
SCRA provide protections to Military parents to delay court proceedings for a 90 day period. The SCRA can delay court proceedings for 90 days or in some cases, till the end of the military parent’s deployment. However, during that timeframe if a situation arises where the child’s best interests comes into play, it can supersede the SCRA. For example, if your ex-spouse convinces the judge that there’s an urgent and compelling enough reason to take custody, they might be able to change the order while the you are deployed. Having an experienced family law and divorce lawyer may be the best way to protect your rights as a military father recently deployed.
Uniform Deployment Parents Custody and Visitation Act
While the SCRA protects the military fathers’ rights by prolonging court proceedings, the Uniform Deployment Parents Custody and Visitation Act is directed mainly at ensuring the service member’s right to custody and visitation. By understanding these laws, the fathers’ rights in the state of Colorado can be enforced.
Can You Have Joint Custody if You Live in Different States?
It is possible to have joint custody when the two parents live in different states, but it’s unlikely. Most judges won’t order joint physical custody in these situations because it becomes complicated. If the parents have joint custody and one moves out-of-state, the court usually transfers custody to one parent.
Child Relocation Laws
Typically, one parent cannot move a child to another state without violating the existing order and child relocation laws. With most military members aware that they will probably move out of state at some point, the custody order must have provisions for this event. To protect the military fathers’ rights, you want to discuss these possibilities with your family lawyer.
The parenting plan is a document created by the parents of a minor child and preferably a qualified attorney. This lays out all of the plans for custody and visitation and can help to ensure the best interest of the child and a military fathers’ rights. Once the parenting plan is agreed upon, it must be approved by the court.
Creating the Custody Agreement
There aren’t many differences with creating a custody agreement or getting a new order between civilian and military families. The judge will use many of the same decision-making abilities to decide what’s best for the minors. To protect the military fathers’ rights, it’s vital to have a family lawyer that understands your unique circumstances.
Military Fathers Rights with Child Support
Beyond the military fathers’ rights, there is also the issue of child support. Being in the military changes the way income is looked at. That’s why you must understand the child support fathers’ rights as well. It’s highly recommended that you don’t attempt to navigate this process alone.
Military Divorce Lawyer Serving Colorado
Thomas Ramunda has more than 25 years of experience dealing with all of the legal issues stemming from a divorce. He’s an expert lawyer for fathers’ rights and often handles alimony, child custody, property division, military divorce, and child support cases in Denver, Colorado Springs, and Castle Rock. You want a fathers’ rights attorney that stands up for you and your children. If you want the best Denver child custody lawyer, visit our Parker, CO or Denver, CO office today and protect the best interest of your children.
GIVE US A CALL
Schedule a Consultation