Louisville, CO asked in Family Law, Child Custody and Child Support for Colorado

Q: My 16 year old son has been talking about wanting to be with me full time instead of his mothers.

Current parenting plan is roughly 50/50. If he decides it is healthier mentally to be with his father what legal action must be taken care of other then filing court paperwork for a change in child support

2 Lawyer Answers

Scott D. Goldman

PREMIUM
Answered
  • Divorce Lawyer
  • Denver, CO
  • Licensed in Colorado

A: Unfortunately, while your son is 16, it is not entirely up to him. The Colorado statute on point allows the court to consider his wishes if he is sufficiently mature enough to express an opinion about the parent he wants to live with, but the statute does not state an exact age for a child to be considered "sufficiently mature". On that note, 16 year olds' wishes are usually given decent weight in this determination, but legally speaking, you must file a Motion to Modify Parenting Time, in order to accomplish this change.

On that note, if you and the mother agree on the change, you can always file a Stipulation re: the change and then file your Motion to Modify Child Support.

Stephen J. Plog

PREMIUM
Answered
  • Divorce Lawyer
  • Greenwood Village, CO
  • Licensed in Colorado

A: You will need to modify both the parenting time and the support. If the mother is in agreement to physically change custody then presumably she would be willing to file a stipulation. If that has been done then support will need to be recalculated. Pursuant to C.R.S. 14-10-122, child support can be modified retroactive to the physical change in custody. Again, if there is no agreement to modify child support you will need to take the over steps of filing a motion to modify. At 16, your child doesn't just get to decide issues of custody or parenting time. That being said, a court is likely to put a good degree of weight on his wishes. More information is needed to fully answer your question and you should consider consulting with an attorney.

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