Loveland, CO asked in Child Custody and Family Law for Colorado

Q: Can I obtain child custody jurisdiction under the UCCJEAA when ex-spouse is military?

The non-custodial parent is a military service member who's home of record is where the initial custody case was determined. However, they have not lived in that state since 2016. Custodial parent and child have relocated to another state. Neither party physically live in original state. Can jurisdiction be moved immediately to the new state where the child and custodial parent reside if the military member is objecting because originating state is their home of record (domicile state) where they do not physically live?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Cindy Perusse
Cindy Perusse
  • Divorce Lawyer
  • Denver, CO
  • Licensed in Colorado

A: Under the UCCJEA, the court that originally issued the custody order keeps jurisdiction over the case unless: 1. all parties no longer reside in the issuing state 2. the issuing state finds that the parties no longer have a connection with the state and evidence for the case no longer available in the issuing state 3. the issuing state declines to exercise its jurisdiction over the case for various reasons listed in the statute or 4. an emergency exists (determined by the new state) such that it is proper to take over jurisdiction of the case.

If you are a military member and deployed for any length of time but intend that CO is your home and you have evidence of that i.e. DL, pay taxes, vote then it doesn't matter where you are currently residing. The general rule is that a person can have many homes but only one domicile for tax purposes and otherwise. If one can show one of the four circumstances then you could ask the court in the new state to take jurisdiction.

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