This fascinating article above sets forth Pope Francis’ recognition that is some very rare cases, divorce can be the right thing to do. Not surprisingly, the statement is premised on the basis that the children must be protected. The article calls it the “think of the children” move.
Primarily, the Pope defended the choices of those in emotionally and physically destructive marriages.
Obviously, there are certain circumstances where it is healthier for the children if the parents to no longer live together.
In Colorado, there are several avenues one can take to protect their children in these circumstances.
The first is to file for a Protection Order. The Court will enter a Protection Order when it finds that unless the person is restrained, they are likely to continue to cause imminent emotional or physical harm to he victim (s). The Court can initially enter this Order (Temporary Injunction) on an ex-parte (without Notice to the other person) basis and then will set for a full evidentiary hearing within 14 days. At the full evidentiary hearing, the Court can convert the Protection Order to a Permanent Order which will stay in place for four years.
Second, one can file for a Dissolution of Marriage or Allocation of Parental Responsibilities (if the parties are not married) and request the Court to enter Orders which are in the best interest of the children. If , in fact, there is an abusive situation taking place, the Court had significant latitude to enter Orders which will protect the children which include, but are not limited to, no contact, supervised contact, alcohol and drug monitoring and/or therapeutic components.
Finally, if there are already Court Orders in place, a party can file a Motion to Restrict. Again, if the Court finds that the children are in imminent danger of physical or emotional harm, it can enter an Order which prevents the alleged abuser form seeing the children. Again, the Court has significant latitude in what it can order to protect the children in theses circumstances.
It is very heartening to see an important figure such as the Pope make this kind of statement, and give people the necessary permission to take the steps they must to protect the innocent children that are the victims in these abusive situations.
Please contact the Domestic Team at Feldmann Nagel Cantafio Margulis Gonnell PLLC to protect your children and for all of your Family Law needs.