On behalf of Cooper & Tanis, P.C. posted in child custody on Wednesday, January 18, 2017.
Divorce negotiations in Colorado and around the country often become highly contentious when topics like alimony and asset division are on the table, but even spouses who find it difficult to be around each other are usually able to see past their differences when the welfare and happiness of their children are at stake. While divorcing parents may not always agree on what would be best for their children, accepting that they both want the same thing is a good first step toward reaching an amicable custody and visitation agreement.
Parents who cooperate despite huge personal differences set good examples for their children, and research indicates that co-parenting is the most beneficial solution for the children of divorce. Family law judges tend to agree, and bitter child custody disputes are becoming increasingly rare as a result. Co-parenting also prevents manipulative children from using one parent to gain an advantage over the other.
Researchers say that children do better in co-parenting situations because they are given consistent rules to follow and know where they stand, but these benefits may be squandered if children are dragged into domestic quarrels or protracted legal disputes. Experts say that a clear set of parenting rules should be established to avoid these pitfalls, but they warn that making the terms of these agreements too restrictive could actually do more harm than good.
Experienced family law attorneys may encourage their divorcing clients to find common ground whenever possible to reduce the likelihood of a public, unpredictable and potentially expensive court battle. Lawyers may also broach the subject of child custody early in negotiations to foster cooperation and frank discussion. When these efforts do not lead to an agreeable settlement, attorneys may recommend alternatives to a civil trial such as divorce mediation.