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Child custody matter has unusual outcome

When faced with an unconventional lifestyle, many family courts are uncertain how to handle a custody fight. For those in Colorado and across the nation who are raising a child in a non-traditional family, it is important to understand that a child custody matter could have an unpredictable outcome. An example is found in a recent case in which custody rights were divided among three parties.

The case centered on a husband and wife who were unable to conceive a child. They entered into an intimate relationship with a female neighbor, and eventually the three began living as a family. When the neighbor became pregnant, they all agreed to raise the child together. About a year after their little boy was born, however, the two women decided to end their relationship with the man. They moved out of the shared home and took the child with them.

The man filed for divorce, and began a lengthy child custody process. When the matter came before a family court judge, the issue of what defines a parent came into play. Because the man was the biological father of the boy, he had a decent chance at receiving custody rights. The child's biological mother was in the same position. The man's wife, however, has no biological link to the child, which is a difficult legal position.

In this child custody matter, the judge was able to look beyond the family's unconventional structure and focus on the best interests of the child. Because the little boy had grown up with two mothers and a father, the judge did not see any reason to alter that arrangement just because the adults were no longer living in that arrangement. As a result, the court granted all three adults shared custody, which is an outcome that many people in Colorado and elsewhere applaud as a move toward legitimizing unusual family structures.

Source: CNN, "Judge gives custody of child to 1 dad and 2 moms", Sarah Jorgensen and Ellie Kaufman, March 14, 2017

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Brandon Ceglian's practice focus is family law, landlord-tenant law / real estate, civil litigation, criminal / DUI, and collections. View Attorney Profile

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