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Joint custody a preferred option for child development

When parents in Colorado move toward divorce, they may be particularly worried about how their time with the children will be affected. Fathers could be especially concerned as beliefs have traditionally favored sole or primary custody for mothers. It has even been stated that overnight custody for fathers with infants and toddlers could be harmful to young children. However, this era of thinking is over; most states and family court judges tend to prefer joint custody or shared parenting as a default.

Indeed, child psychologists affirm that joint custody is usually the best option for a child's health and well-being. Even the youngest children benefit from a shared parenting schedule, including overnight time with both parents. In most cases, joint custody arrangements involve week-to-week switches in which the child spends a week with one parent and then switches to the other parent's home. These schedules can be complicated due to the parents' employment obligations, especially if they work irregular schedules. Therefore, different families can develop a parenting plan that works for their unique needs.

Studies show that children raised under joint custody have improved outcomes in terms of physical and mental health as well as academic achievement. However, sole custody is often associated with an absent parent, abuse or neglect. All of these are additional factors that may complicate a child's home life and emotional development.

Divorce can be a difficult time for parents and children as it requires significant adjustments in the way people live and share space with one another. A family law attorney can help a divorcing parent reach a resolution that protects the parent-child relationship and includes a fair custody agreement.

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